Monitoring food security in countries with conflict situations

Post date Wednesday, 30 January, 2019 - 13:13

This report provides United Nations Security Council (UNSC) members with an overview of the magnitude, severity and drivers of acute food insecurity in eight countries and regions that have the world’s highest burden of people in need of emergency food, nutrition and livelihood assistance as a result of protracted conflict combined with other factors. These countries are: Afghanistan, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Lake Chad Basin, Somalia, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic and Yemen. According to latest analyses from late 2018 (mainly Integrated Food Security Phase Classification [IPC]), around 56 million people need urgent food and livelihood assistance in these countries. 

In five of these countries (Yemen, South Sudan, Afghanistan, Democratic Republic of the Congo and Central African Republic) the number of people experiencing acute food insecurity increased in the latter part of 2018 because of conflict, demonstrating that the link between conflict and hunger remains all too persistent. The other three (Somalia, Syrian Arabic Republic and Lake Chad Basin) have seen improvements in food security in line with improvements in security, although a major deterioration is projected during the 2019 lean season across Lake Chad Basin. The United Nations (UN) is working to reduce conflict – and the impact of it – in all countries covered in this report. UNSC Resolution 2417 (2018) calls on all parties to armed conflict to comply with their obligations under International Humanitarian Law (IHL) regarding the protection of civilians – including aid workers – in conflict. However, violence against humanitarian workers is growing, sometimes forcing organizations to suspend operations and depriving vulnerable populations of humanitarian assistance. Ensuring all parties to conflict honour their obligations under IHL to minimize impact of military actions on civilians, their livelihoods and medical facilities is critical if this growth in acute food insecurity is to be stemmed. All parties to conflict must do more to enable humanitarian actors to reach civilians in need with lifesaving food, nutritional and medical assistance in a safe and timely manner to reduce the millions of men, women and children going hungry as a result of armed conflict.

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