Statement by 52 NGOs working in Somalia on rapidly deteriorating humanitarian crisis

By Oxfam

MOGADISHU — We, the undersigned NGOs, are extremely concerned about the devastating humanitarian crisis in Somalia.

Nearly half of Somalia?s population, or 3.25 million people, are now in need of emergency aid. This is a 77% increase since the beginning of 2008. This number has increased dramatically over the past year due to the destructive combination of extreme insecurity, drought and record-high food prices. The situation is expected to deteriorate further with ordinary Somalis bearing the brunt of the cost.

Despite the ongoing political process we have not witnessed any lessening of the violence that continues to have a horrendous impact on civilians.

In the last few weeks, renewed shelling in Mogadishu has displaced approximately 37,000 civilians from their homes. Over the past nine months, 870,000 have fled for their lives. A total of 1.1 million people are currently displaced in Somalia today.

We are appalled by the indiscriminate and disproportional use of force by all armed parties to the conflict, which is further exacerbating the humanitarian crisis.

The poorest of Mogadishu?s residents have no means to flee the extreme violence and have limited means to earn a living leaving them completely dependent on humanitarian assistance. This while the average Somali has seen price increases for food and water of up to 1,000 percent, plunging many into worsening poverty. One in six children under five, or approximately 180,000 children, is acutely malnourished in South and Central Somalia.

Aid workers are increasingly the victims of assassination and kidnapping and are now seen as legitimate targets. This year alone 24 aid workers, of which 20 are Somali nationals, have been killed whilst carrying out their work. The whereabouts of another ten are unknown. There have been 111 reported security incidents directly targeting aid agencies.

National and international aid agencies are prevented from responding effectively to the needs of ordinary Somalis because of violence and severely limited access. At present, South and Central Somalia is almost entirely off limits to international staff of aid agencies.

We call upon all parties to the conflict to allow aid agencies unhindered access to Somalis who are in desperate need of emergency assistance.

The international community has completely failed Somali civilians. We call on the international community to make the protection of Somali civilians a top priority now.

Signatories to the statement (52 National and International NGOs):

  1. ADRA - Adventist Relief Development Agency
  2. AET ? Africa Educational Trust
  3. AFREC ? Africa Rescue Committee
  4. ASEP ? Advancement for Small Enterprise Program
  5. CARE ? Cooperative Assistance for Relief Everywhere
  6. CARITAS SWITZERLAND & CARITAS LUXUMBOURG
  7. CEFA ? Somalia European Committee for Agricultural Training
  8. CISP ? Comitato Internazionale per lo Sviluppo dei Popoli
  9. CPD Centre for Peace and Democracy
  10. COOPI ? Cooperazione Internazionale
  11. DEVELOPMENT CONCERN
  12. DRC - Danish Refugee Council
  13. DIAKONIA EMERGENCY AID BREAD FOR THE WORLD
  14. DIAKONIA Sweden
  15. FERO ? Family Economy Rehabilitation Organization
  16. GHC ? Gedo Health Consortium
  17. GREDO ? Gol Yome Rehabilitatation & Development Organisation
  18. HANDICAP INTERNATIONAL
  19. HAPO CHILD ? Hiran HIV/AIDS Prevention and Child Protecton Organisation
  20. HARDO ? Humanitarian Action for Relief and Development Organisation
  21. HIMILO ? Himilo Relief and Development Association
  22. HISAN
  23. HORN RELIEF
  24. IAS ? International Aid Services
  25. IDF ? Integrated Development Focus
  26. IMC ? International Medical Corps
  27. INTERPEACE/WSP ? Interpeace / War torn Societies
  28. INTERSOS
  29. IRC ? International Rescue Committee
  30. IREX ? International Research & Exchanges Board
  31. ISLAMIC RELIEF
  32. KAALO RELIEF AND DEVELOPMENT
  33. MAG ? Mines Advisory Group
  34. MEDAIR
  35. MERCY CORPS SOMALIA
  36. MERLIN
  37. NORWEGIAN CHURCH AID
  38. NRC ? Norwegian Refugee Council
  39. OXFAM INTERNATIONAL
  40. PROGRESSIO UK
  41. RI ? Relief International
  42. SAACID AUSTRALIA
  43. SAFERWORLD
  44. SCUK ? Save the Children UK
  45. TERRA NUOVA ? Terra Nuova Association for International Cooperation to Development
  46. TROCAIRE
  47. VSF SUISSE ? Veterinaires Sans Frontieres - Switzerland
  48. VSF GERMANY - Veterinaires Sans Frontieres - Germany
  49. WELTHUNGERHILFE
  50. WOCCA ? Women and Child Care Organization
  51. WORLD CONCERN
  52. WORLD VISION
  53. </oL

Share this article:

Oxfam.org Facebook Twitter Instagram YouTube Google+