Humanitarian assistance needs remain high in southeastern pastoral areas
– Many pastoral areas of southeastern Ethiopia are expected to remain in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) in the absence of assistance between March and September 2017, following the very poor performance of the Deyr/Hageya 2016 season and an expected below-average Gu/Genna 2017 season. Some worst-affected households in southeastern Somali Region are likely to be in Emergency (IPC Phase 4) through September. In addition, poor households in lowland areas of eastern and southern Oromia, parts of southern and northern SNNPR, and eastern Amhara are likely to be in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) following below-average Meher harvests.
– February to May Belg 2017 was above average in February in most parts of SNNPR, Amhara, western Oromia, and parts of eastern Oromia, but rainfall was below average in March. Planting of maize, haricot bean, and some root crops have already started in few areas of SNNPR and most of Amhara and Tigray Belg growing areas. However, in central, southern and eastern Oromia, below-average rainfall has limited planting of Belg crops.
– Areas of eastern Somali Region where Gu rainfall typically begins in April remained seasonally dry in March. Southern areas of Oromia and SNNPR, where Gu/Genna rainfall typically begins in mid-March, received several days of unseasonal rainfall in February, but rainfall in March has been below average and the start of season is considered to be up to two weeks late in some areas. The full onset of the season is needed to significantly regenerate pastoral resources and mitigate further deterioration of livestock body conditions, milk production, and livestock health, and to limit continued, significant livestock deaths, following the very poor Deyr/Hageya rains in late 2016.
– The NDRMC, WFP, and JEOP are currently distributing humanitarian assistance as part of the HRD’s recommended assistance programming to 5.6 million people between January and June 2017. Approximately 92 percent of the first round has been dispatched, and 40 percent has been distributed to beneficiaries, as of March 9, 2017. Issues related to insecurity along the Oromia-Somali border have resulted in some delays in provision of humanitarian assistance, which could limit the impacts of assistance in some worst-affected areas.
– The number of South Sudanese refugees fleeing to Ethiopia has increased significantly in March 2017, with approximately 7,250 refugees arriving between March 1-11, 2017, compared to 4,600 between January 1-February 28. The latest influx has brought the total number of South Sudanese refugees who have arrived in Ethiopia since September 2016 to 68,858. In addition, the number of refugees arriving into Ethiopia from Somalia increased in 2017, with 4,106 refugees arriving into Dollo Ado camp between January 1 and February 28, 2017.
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