|Food Security worsens as Drought looms in Somalia|
Emergency unfolding among Mogadishu IDPs
July 7 2014 Nairobi - Somalia’s food security crisis is expected to worsen over the next several months following poor performance of the major rainy season (Gu), shrinking humanitarian assistance and access, increasing malnutrition, conflict and surging food prices, analysts have warned. A severe water shortage is also expected in the months to come. In early February 2014, The FAO’s Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit for Somalia (FSNAU) and the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET), estimate that 857,000 people remain in Crisis and Emergency (IPC Phases 3 and 4)1 requiring urgent humanitarian assistance through June 2014.
An estimated 203,000 acutely malnourished children under the age of 5 also require urgent treatment and nutrition support through mid 2014.However, substantial population displacement and sharp increase in cereal prices due to trade disruptions in parts of Southern Somalia following the Government’s military offensive against insurgents in March; late and largely below normal Gu (April-June) rainfall in most parts of Somalia and a general increase in cereal prices, among other factors are worsening an already acute crisis.
Consequently, as the dry season (July-September) advances, severe water scarcity is likely to hit the country’s livestock sector, which employs 65 percent of Somalia and a major source of foreign earnings. In urban areas affected by trade disruptions, cereal prices have increased by 40 to 60 percent since March 2014, well above normal levels. As a result, the worst affected areas where deterioration is expected in the food security situation to Crisis (IPC Phase 3) in the August-December 2014 period include: agropastoral and conflict affected urban populations in Bakool; parts of agropastoral populations of Gedo and Middle Juba regions; agropastoral, riverine and conflict affected urban populations in Hiran; and parts of Lower Shabelle region and Cowpea Belt of Central Somalia.