Publisher: Radio Okapi
Story date: 17/11/2011
Nés de parents déplacés qui n'avaient pu les enregistrer à leur naissance, 74 enfants ont reçu leur acte de naissance mercredi 16 novembre à Kiwanja, en territoire de Rutshuru dans le Nord-Kivu. Ces documents, qui ont pu leur être remis après les délais officiels, leur permettent de jouir de leurs droits, ouverts par l'accès à une nationalité. Le projet est financé par le Haut Commissariat pour les réfugiés (HCR).
Cette cérémonie intervient après que un jugement rendu en faveur de ces enfants. Ils n'avaient pas pu être enregistrés à l'Etat civil dans le délai de 90 jours après leurs naissances, car leurs parents étaient déplacés.
Le projet financé par le HCR est exécuté en collaboration avec les autorités congolaises. Il vise à résoudre certains problèmes liés à l'identité de l'enfant dans la société, et dans la province du Nord-Kivu en particulier où le phénomène est amplifié par l'insécurité.
Le chef du sous-bureau du HCR au Nord-Kivu, Kouassi Lazare Etienne, a expliqué au micro de Radio Okapi la nécessité pour ces enfants d'obtenir un acte de naissance.
« Avoir un pays, une nationalité » leur donne notamment accès à la totalité des services publics, explique-t-il, et leur permet de jouir de leurs droits.
« Il y a ce problème [des enfants sans acte de naissanceNDLR] en RD. Il fallait donc appuyer les autorités congolaises et peut-être trouver une solution à ce risque. C'est dans ce but que nous appuyons les autorités Congolaises. Pour l'instant nous travaillons avec le gouvernement du Nord kivu à qui nous apportions un appui logistique et financier », a-t-il conclu.
Plus de 250 autres enfants sont concernés par cette campagne menée à Kiwanja, à 75 km de Goma.
Le processus comporte trois étapes :
- les audiences publiques
- le prononcé du jugement
- la remise officielle des actes de naissance aux parents.
Publisher: Nairobi Star
Author: by Kibiwott Koross
Story date: 17/11/2011
Nov 17, 2011 (Nairobi Star/All Africa Global Media via COMTEX) Cholera outbreak has been reported in Daadab, the world's largest refugee camp. The outbreak is believed to have started among new arrivals suspected to have acquired it in Somalia. UN High Commissioner for Refugees in a report said the situation in Dadaab, which is home to Somalis fleeing famine and conflict, is being exacerbated by heavy rains and accompanying risks of waterborne diseases.
The outbreak has been reported in Ifo 1, Hagadera, Dagahley and Kambioos. Thirty six cases have been line-listed since August 2011, with 11 laboratory confirmations, said the UNHCR report.
Many Somalis are running away from their country following the entry of Kenyan troops who are hunting for al Shabaab insurgents. "Rains and flooding had affected the trucking of water to parts of the camps and we fear some refugees resorted to using unsafe water from flooded areas," the UN refugee agency said in the statement released on Tuesday.
Nearly half a million people have fled Somalia to seek assistance in Dadaab in the last two decades. The UNHCR and other aid agencies have set up cholera treatment centres in the camp for severe cases. The agency deplored insecurity which it said continues to affect aid efforts.
Publisher: BBC News
Story date: 17/11/2011
Kenya is prepared to send troops to bolster the African Union (AU) force in Somalia to tackle militant Islamists, Foreign Minister Moses Wetangula says.
Kenya launched military action in Somalia last month after blaming the al-Shabab group for a spate of abductions on its territory.
Al-Shabab, which denies involvement in the abductions, has vowed to retaliate.
The AU has about 9,000 troops in Somalia, but they are confined to the capital, Mogadishu.
Al-Shabab, which is linked to al-Qaeda, controls most other parts of southern and central Somalia.
Mr Wetangula told the BBC Kenya was prepared to beef up the AU force.
"That is on offer. In case a request is made, Kenya will avail a few of its battalions [made up of about 1,000 soldiers each] to join Uganda, Burundi and Djibouti to help keep the peace in Somalia," he told the BBC's Network Africa programme.
"It's not difficult to do that."
Arab League talks
The 9,000-strong AU force is currently made up of Ugandan and Burundian soldiers, with Djibouti and Sierra Leone expected to bolster its numbers to 12,000 by the end of the year.
The African Union says it would like to increase its numbers to 20,000 but so far, there have not been enough concrete troop offers.
Mr Wetangula said a 2006 UN Security Council resolution which prevented states bordering Somalia from contributing to the AU force had been changed a year later, making it possible for both Djibouti and Kenya to offer troops.
Kenya's President Mwai Kibaki discussed Kenya's offer with his Somali and Ugandan counterparts Sheikh Sharif Ahmed and Yoweri Museveni respectively in Nairobi on Wednesday.
However, the communique read out by Mr Wetangula to the press in the presence of the three presidents made no mention of the Kenyan troop offer.
BBC East Africa correspondent says there was then surprise when a different communique was released to the media with a paragraph amended to include it.
Mr Wetangula has flown to Morocco to brief an Arab League meeting about Kenya's incursion into Somalia.
Last month, President Ahmed publicly opposed the incursion, which Nairobi says is aimed at securing the long border between the two countries.
Nairobi accuses al-Shabab of abducting several people from Kenya since September including a French woman who suffered from cancer and who, French authorities say, has since died.
Al-Shabab says it views the incursion as an act of war and it will take revenge by attacking Kenya.
Al-Shabab is locked in a battle with the weak UN-back interim government for control of the parts of the country which are currently outside its power, particularly Mogadishu.
Publisher: The Guardian, UK
Author: Liz Ford
Story date: 17/11/2011
Disease brought to camps in Kenya by Somali refugees claims one life as treatment centres set up to manage severe cases
The UN has confirmed an outbreak of cholera at the Dadaab refugee complex in Kenya, which has so far claimed one life.
The UN refugee agency, UNHCR, said this week that 60 people had been diagnosed with the disease at the complex, now home to around 500,000 refugees, mainly those fleeing conflict, famine and severe food shortages in neighbouring Somalia.
The disease is believed to have been started by Somali refugees who had been infected on their way to the camps. Heavy rains and flooding have compounded the problem, as delivery of water to some of the camps at Dadaab has been disrupted, causing some people to use unsafe supplies, the UNHCR said.
Cholera is an acute intestinal infection, spread through water that has been in contact with the faecal matter from an infected person.
Treatment centres have been set up to manage the severe cases, although most are being treated through oral rehydration solutions administered at people's tents or at the health posts.
"We have increased levels of chlorine, which kills cholera-causing bacteria, at water points in the camps," said a UNHCR spokesman. "These are monitored to make sure they are maintained at the correct levels. We are also promoting hygiene practices among the refugees, especially the use of latrines and hand washing with soap. Each refugee received 250g of soap with the latest food distribution, and this will continue monthly for several months."
The kidnapping of aid workers from Dadaab last month and the increased tension across the Kenyan and Somalia border has slowed the delivery of aid to refugees, increasing the risk of waterborne diseases.
Almost 100 extra Kenyan police have been deployed in the camps in the last month, the UN said.
The number of refugees arriving at Dadaab has slowed over recent weeks, but refugees continue to cross the border into Ethiopia. The UN said this week that a survey conducted at refugee camps in the Dollo Ado region of Ethiopia found people arriving from Somalia were in "extremely poor health", with many families losing children to malnutrition en route or after arrival in Ethiopia. The survey found high levels of malnutrition among children under five. However, the UN said the number of deaths among children in this age bracket had decreased since the peak of the refugee influx in the summer.
Publisher: The Financial Times, UK
Author: By Tom Burgis in London
Story date: 17/11/2011
In the 11 months since Financial Times readers donated $1.6m to Action Against Hunger/ACF International in last year's seasonal appeal, the charity has once more found itself on the front lines of the battle against starvation.
Working to combat malnutrition in more than 40 countries, ACF has seen its share of crises. Yet rarely have relief agencies been confronted with a calamity as grave as that caused by the drought that struck the Horn of Africa this year, imperilling an estimated 13m people.
In July the UN declared a famine in Somalia, the worst in nearly 20 years in a conflict-torn country as miserable as any on earth. One in every two Somalis is now at risk of starvation, the UN's World Food Programme estimates, many of them beyond the reach of international assistance.
Numerous relief agencies have raised the alarm over the Somali hunger crisis and sought to assist refugees in Kenya and other neighbouring countries.
Yet few have braved the epicentre in Somalia's lawless south, swaths of which are controlled by the Islamist militant group al-Shabaab, which became the target of a Kenyan invasion launched last month.
ACF has been working in Somalia since 1992, the year before a US-led military incursion targeting warlords in Mogadishu, the capital, ended with the deaths of 18 American soldiers and a Malaysian when militiamen shot down two Black Hawk helicopters.
Today the charity has 154 local staff in the country. They provided emergency nutrition to 15,000 people between January and August and reached hundreds of thousands more with clean water, health programmes and food distributions.
"To scale up in the areas we are working has not been an easy task," says Jean-Michel Grand, an ACF executive director. "It has meant negotiations with local leaders, with al-Shabaab."
Mr Grand says ACF's access in Somalia is testimony to the spirit of independence that has characterised the organisation since it was founded by a group of French intellectuals in 1979.
This year's FT appeal for Sightsavers, an international charity working to prevent avoidable blindness and assist blind people in poor countries begins on Monday.
Funds from last year's appeal have gone to ACF's Horn of Africa mission and also to help sustain existing projects and support its advocacy work.
Although the Central African Republic's informal diamond trade has picked up a little after a recent crash, life for miners and their families remains precarious.
So the ACF project there, visited by the FT a year ago, has expanded its focus beyond emergency feeding to efforts to improve farming techniques and help local women diversify incomes.
ACF, which raised $215m last year, is planning an ambitious funding drive to boost its income by $50m annually over the next five years.
If successful, this would allow the charity to increase the number of malnourished children it treats each year from 220,000 children last year to 500,000 by 2015.
Worldwide, food is becoming stubbornly expensive. As austerity policies bite in rich nations, the task of securing government funding is becoming ever more difficult.
"The crisis in Europe is taking its toll in terms of diverting priorities," says Mr Grand, adding that ACF lobbied world leaders at the recent Group of 20 summit urging action on hunger and food prices. "We can understand that but we don't have to accept it."
Publisher: the New York Times, USA
Author: By JEFFREY GETTLEMAN
Story date: 17/11/2011
NAIROBI, Kenya — The African Union is considering an ambitious plan to stabilize Somalia that could involve using thousands of Ethiopian troops to open a new front against the Shabab militant group, officials of the union said Thursday.
The African Union's peacekeepers are already battling the Shabab in Mogadishu, the capital, and Kenyan forces have recently begun fighting the Shabab in southern Somalia near Kismaayo. But the prospect of the Ethiopian Army returning to the country under the African Union's banner is highly charged because of Ethiopia's bitter history in Somalia.
An official of the Somali government said Thursday that Ethiopian troops had already begun to move across the border, discomfiting Somalia's president, Sheik Sharif Sheik Ahmed.
Ethiopia has one of the largest armies in Africa and has often clashed with Somalia. Ethiopian troops invaded Somalia in 2006 to oust an Islamist movement that then controlled much of the country. Sheik Sharif was one of the movement's leaders, and after hiding from the Ethiopians, he fled Somalia.
The Ethiopian troops remained for about two years, and their occupation was hugely unpopular; thousands of civilians were killed when the troops indiscriminately shelled urban areas. The Shabab capitalized on the intense anti-Ethiopian feelings, and their ranks swelled.
Western and African Union officials say the Ethiopians are now eager to deal the Shabab a crushing blow and to install their own proxies in Somalia, which could lead to even more power struggles and factional bloodshed.
The Somali official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the delicacy of the topic, said that Sheik Sharif was not happy with the prospect that Ethiopian troops would return, "but he has no choice" because his government ruled only a small area of the capital and was powerless to block the move. The Ethiopians are expected to work closely with Somali clan militias in the Baidoa area and are not likely to enter Mogadishu again.
A senior African Union official, who also spoke on the condition of anonymity, stressed that any Ethiopian involvement would be carefully coordinated with the existing 9,000-strong African Union peacekeeping force, which has sustained heavy casualties recently.
"The idea is to relieve pressure on Amisom," the official said, referring to the peacekeeping force by its acronym. "We're looking at how neighboring countries can assist, and we are quite aware of the sensitive aspects."
Somalia, which has not had an effective national government since 1991, is rapidly becoming an arena where Kenya, Ethiopia and even Uganda, which has contributed thousands of troops to the peacekeeping force, vie for influence and use their involvement in the war-ravaged country for leverage with Western aid donors.
Many analysts accuse the African Union and Kenya of being tone-deaf to the complicated politics in Somalia, where the fledgling transitional government is struggling to defeat Islamist militants, rally the populace to its side and extend its sway.
For instance, this week Kenya proudly announced a new cooperation pact with Israel, under which Israeli experts will help beef up Kenya's counterterrorism forces, who already get millions of dollars in assistance from the United States and Britain.
Trumpeting the cooperation pact seemed to play straight into the hands of the Shabab, who present themselves as the true defenders of Islam in Somalia. The group immediately circulated recruiting agents from mosque to mosque, telling potential followers that the Kenyans were bent on a religious crusade in Somalia and had teamed up with Israel.
Kenya sent troops into southern Somalia in October, initially saying they were chasing kidnappers; it later said the incursion was months in the making and was intended to clear militants from a buffer zone along the Kenya-Somalia border.
On Thursday, Salim Lone, an adviser to the Kenyan prime minister, defended the pact with Israel.
"This new international alliance will substantially strengthen Kenya's ability to protect itself from more terror attacks," Mr. Lone said. "But to succeed, it must be accompanied by a related campaign to address the causes which breed extremism among Muslims at the coast and the northeast," the areas of Kenya nearest to Somalia with the highest concentrations of Muslims.
African Union officials said Thursday that the Kenyan forces would soon be absorbed into the official peacekeeping operation, and that the African Union would ask the United Nations to authorize as many as 20,000 African peacekeepers for Somalia.
Publisher: AFP, Agence France Presse
Author: Par Hannah MCNEISH
Story date: 17/11/2011
YIDa (Soudan du Sud), 17 nov 2011 (AFP) Dans le camp de Yida, certains
espèrent vendre un peu de café et d'épices pour pouvoir s'acheter à manger,
mais d'autres retraversent la frontière vers le Kordofan-Sud où les combats
font rage plutôt que d'avoir à subir la faim dans les camps du Soudan du Sud.
Bilal Issa Johar est l'un des 25.000 déplacés du Kordofan-Sud, bombardé par
l'armée soudanaise, réfugiés de l'autre côté de la frontière, au Soudan du Sud
nouvellement indépendant. Mais il y a une semaine, les bombardements qu'il
fuyait l'ont rattrapé.
Un avion Antonov venu du Soudan a lâché cinq bombes sur Yida et ses
alentours. Selon le Haut commissariat de l'ONU pour les réfugiés (HCR), deux
bombes ont atterri dans l'enceinte du camp, dont une à proximité d'une école
mais il n'y a pas eu de victime.
Les réfugiés de Yida se sentent abandonnés par la communauté internationale
et la faim les tenaille. Le président soudanais Omar el-Béchir a encore attisé
les craintes en affirmant que le camp de Yida hébergeait des rebelles.
"Tout le monde se plaint de la nourriture parce que nous n'avons pas assez
à manger ici", explique M. Johar, un ancien instituteur.
Ils sont plusieurs dans le camp à évoquer le cas de réfugiés retournés au
Kordofan-Sud en proie au combat, faute de nourriture dans le camp.
Les trois kilos de sorgho attribués à chacun pour une semaine "ne sont pas
suffisants pour maintenir en vie un homme", déplore de son côté Hussein
Al-Gumbulwa, qui dirige le camp, où chaque jour 300 nouveaux réfugiés arrivent.
"Nous sommes dans la même situation que les réfugiés en Ethiopie. Les
Nations unies font du très bon travail là-bas. Mais ici, elles nous oublient",
ajoute-t-il en référence aux 30.000 personnes ayant fui l'Etat du Nil Bleu
pour se rendre en Ethiopie, après que les affrontements entamés en juin au
Kordofan-Sud se sont étendus à cet Etat en septembre.
Le Parti national du Congrès (NCP) au pouvoir à Khartoum affirme combattre
des milices qui ont soutenu les ex-rebelles sudistes durant la longue guerre
civile qui a opposé Nord et Sud Soudan.
Après le bombardement de la semaine dernière, des centaines de personnes
ont fui le camp et 614 enfants se sont dispersés dans la brousse, selon les
responsables de l'éducation au sein du camp.
Selon M. Gumbulwa, des familles entières sont retournées au Kordofan-Sud,
faute de nourriture et d'école à Yida.
Mardi, les Nations unies ont mis en place une école mobile et apporté 12
tonnes de nourriture, l'équivalent d'une ration quotidienne, tandis que trois
vols du Programme alimentaire mondial sont arrivés mercredi, représentant la
première aide internationale depuis le bombardement. Seules deux ONG ont
encore du personnel sur le terrain.
Dans l'unique clinique de Yida, des dizaines de personnes entassées dans
trois pièces sans lumière attendent d'être soignées. Les réserves de
médicaments sont à peine entamées.
"Nous manquons d'antibiotiques et de traitements contre la malaria",
souligne Chaluma Hassan Ialo, une infirmière soudanaise qui travaille pour
Les problèmes de malnutrition des enfants viennent compliquer la tâche de
cette clinique qui reçoit déjà 400 patients chaque jour, avec le risque de
possibles nouveaux bombardements.
Le HCR a évoqué la possibilité de déplacer les réfugiés plus au sud, à
Nyeel. Une région plus éloignée de la frontière disputée mais dans le même
temps plus proche des milices sudistes qui attaquent des zones civiles dans
l'Etat d'Unité, et posent des mines.
Publisher: VOA, Voice of America
Story date: 17/11/2011
A week after bombs fell near the Yida refugee camp in South Sudan, shortages of supplies are taking their toll on the more than 20,000 people sheltering there. There is growing hunger and illness after many aid agencies pulled out because of fears of more attacks blamed on neighbor Sudan.
At Yida's only clinic, local staff are working, around the clock, to try to treat the growing number of refugees needing medical attention. The staff's international colleagues have not returned since the November 10 bombing.
The clinic is low on everything but painkillers and that is not what is needed to treat most of the 400 daily patients. Nurse Caddy Ali, who works for Sudanese charity Youth For Freedom, says they have run out of antibiotics and will have no more treatment for malaria, the camp's biggest problem. She hopes medicines can be flown in or that the U.S aid agency, Care International, which runs the pharmacy, will return soon.
"We are using the drugs that are already here. They have left since the bombing and they did not supply any drugs. If they did not get, we will face an emergency or maybe a crisis, as if people are sick and they cannot get drugs there will be a problem. Even the ones we are having here, it's like the drugs we came with for our personal use," said Caddy Ali.
The clinic staff also say severe food shortages has caused a spike in anaemia and malnutrition especially in children.
In Yida's busy marketplace, with very little for sale, former teacher turned street vendor Bilal Issa Johar says that the lack of food is the refugees' main concern.
"It is there, but it is very little. Because we are given little food here. All the people here they are complain[ing] about the food because it is not enough," said Joha.
Johar says that some refugees have already walked back home to a war zone in Sudan's Southern Kordofan state to take their chances finding food there.
The United Nations suspended aid flights last week, after the Yida camp was bombed. With only a couple of small aid agencies on the ground and up to 300 people arriving from South Kordofan daily, Yida's refugees are hoping that the food keeps coming and the bombs stop falling on both sides of the border.
Sudan rejected international accusations that it was responsible for incident. But there are reports that Sudan is expanding its capacity to conduct air strikes along its border with South Sudan. The two countries have been at odds, since the South formerly gained independence in July.
Publisher: AFP, Agence France Presse
Story date: 17/11/2011
YIDA, South Sudan, Nov 17, 2011 (AFP) Hundreds of refugees displaced by
fighting in Sudan demonstrated on Thursday at the lack of UN protection and
humanitarian assistance at a camp in South Sudan that was bombed last week.
The large crowd chanted slogans like: "Wake up Ban Ki-moon, we are human
just like you!" and called on the United Nations to enforce a no-fly zone to
stop the Sudanese army from bombing them in war-torn South Kordofan and over
the border in the newly independent south.
"They are calling for the international community ... to pay attention to
what happened to Nuba people and innocent people who are just killed by
(Sudanese President) Omar al-Bashir's regime without any discrimination," said
Mustafa Jamus, the deputy chairman of the camp.
Four bombs fell on Yida on November 10, according to camp residents, who
number up to 25,000 people. They are fugitives from the conflict in South
Kordofan that first erupted in June between southern-aligned Nuba rebels and
the Sudanese Armed Forces.
No one was killed in the air strikes, and the army has denied widespread
accusations that it was responsible.
"These people are demonstrating to show to the world that the bombardment
was targeting innocent civilians, not military garrisons," Jamus said, as the
crowd chanted "Liar, liar, Daffa-Allah Elhag!" in response to claims by Sudans
UN ambassador that the refugee camp was only housing rebels.
The protesters also demanded that Bashir be tried by the International
Criminal Court for war crimes, and appealed for humanitarian assistance.
Bashir is the first sitting president indicted by the ICC, which issued an
arrest warrant for him on charges of genocide, crimes against humanity and war
crimes in Sudan's troubled Darfur region.
The United Nations and international aid agencies Medair and Care
International pulled out after the bomb attack and only a few small US
Humanitarian workers at the camp say medical supplies will run out this
week if no more arrive. The added that there is widespread malnutrition and
anaemia due to a lack of food since weeks before the bombing, which coincided
with the first UN delivery of food aid.
"If there is not any food security for the people, no clean water and no
health centres it means that we will not survive alone," said Yussef Ismail
Abdelgani, a former civil engineer who fled South Kordofan's Heiban county in
South Sudan seceded from the north in July after decades of civil war. Just
hours before the bombing, President Salva Kiir warned of a "pending invasion,"
claiming Sudan wanted to draw the south back into conflict and recapture its
Publisher: AFP, Agence France Presse
Story date: 17/11/2011
Hundreds of refugees displaced by fighting in Sudan demonstrated on Thursday at the lack of UN protection and humanitarian assistance at a camp in South Sudan that was bombed last week.
The large crowd chanted slogans like: "Wake up Ban Ki-moon, we are human just like you!" and called on the United Nations to enforce a no-fly zone to stop the Sudanese army from bombing them in war-torn South Kordofan and over the border in the newly independent south.
"They are calling for the international community ... to pay attention to what happened to Nuba people and innocent people who are just killed by (Sudanese President) Omar al-Bashir's regime without any discrimination," said Mustafa Jamus, the deputy chairman of the camp.
Four bombs fell on Yida on November 10, according to camp residents, who number up to 25,000 people. They are fugitives from the conflict in South Kordofan that first erupted in June between southern-aligned Nuba rebels and the Sudanese Armed Forces.
No one was killed in the air strikes, and the army has denied widespread accusations that it was responsible.
"These people are demonstrating to show to the world that the bombardment was targeting innocent civilians, not military garrisons," Jamus said, as the crowd chanted "Liar, liar, Daffa-Allah Elhag!" in response to claims by Sudan's UN ambassador that the refugee camp was only housing rebels.
The protesters also demanded that Bashir be tried by the International Criminal Court for war crimes, and appealed for humanitarian assistance.
Bashir is the first sitting president indicted by the ICC, which issued an arrest warrant for him on charges of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes in Sudan's troubled Darfur region.
The United Nations and international aid agencies Medair and Care International pulled out after the bomb attack and only a few small US agencies remain.
Humanitarian workers at the camp say medical supplies will run out this week if no more arrive. The added that there is widespread malnutrition and anaemia due to a lack of food since weeks before the bombing, which coincided with the first UN delivery of food aid.
"If there is not any food security for the people, no clean water and no health centres it means that we will not survive alone," said Yussef Ismail Abdelgani, a former civil engineer who fled South Kordofan's Heiban county in July.
South Sudan seceded from the north in July after decades of civil war. Just hours before the bombing, President Salva Kiir warned of a "pending invasion," claiming Sudan wanted to draw the south back into conflict and recapture its land.
Refugees Global Press Review
Compiled by Media Relations and Public Information Service, UNHCR
For UNHCR Internal Distribution