Cablegate: Somalia Deyr Assessment Results Indicate Sustained

INFO LOG-00 AF-00 AGRE-00 A-00 CA-00 CIAE-00 INL-00
DODE-00 DS-00 EAP-00 EUR-00 UTED-00 VCI-00 H-00
TEDE-00 INR-00 IO-00 LAB-01 MOFM-00 MOF-00 CDC-00
VCIE-00 DCP-00 NSAE-00 OIC-00 NIMA-00 EPAU-00 PA-00
MCC-00 GIWI-00 P-00 SP-00 IRM-00 FMP-00 CBP-00
EPAE-00 SCRS-00 DSCC-00 PRM-00 DRL-00 NFAT-00 SAS-00
FA-00 SWCI-00 PESU-00 SANA-00 /001W

R 031414Z FEB 10



E.O. 12958: N/A


1. On January 29, the U.N. Food and Agriculture
Organization (FAO) Food Security and Nutrition
Analysis Unit (FSNAU) presented findings from the 2009/2010
post-October to December short rains seasonal assessment.
According to FSNAU, an estimated 3.2 million people will
require humanitarian assistance in Somalia between January
and June 2010, representing approximately 42 percent of the
estimated total population and a nine percent decrease
since July 2009. While an above-normal harvest has
improved food security in southern agricultural areas of
Somalia, conflict and increased attacks targeting aid
agencies have led to temporary suspensions in activities
and diminishing access, hindering the delivery of
humanitarian assistance to populations in need. In
addition, below-normal rainfall in northern regions has
resulted in significant water and pasture shortages.
Humanitarian partners also continue to report high levels
of malnutrition, particularly in south Somalia.

2. The U.S. represents the single largest donor of
humanitarian assistance to Somalia, providing more than USD
153 million in Fiscal Year (FY) 2009 and to date in FY
2010, including nearly USD 14.5 million from the USAID
Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA) and
nearly USD 139 million in USAID Office of Food for Peace
(USAID/FFP) funding. USAID/OFDA and USAID/FFP staff are
closely monitoring humanitarian conditions in Somalia. End


3. On January 29, FSNAU presented findings from the
2009/2010 post-deyr seasonal assessment conducted by FSNAU,
the USAID-funded Famine and Early Warning Systems Network
(FEWS NET), and 88 partners, including regional
authorities, UN agencies, and local and international non-
governmental organizations (NGOs). According to the
results, an estimated 3.2 million people will require
humanitarian assistance in Somalia between January and June
2010, representing between 32 and 42 percent of the total
estimated population of between 7.5 and 9.8 million people
and a nine percent decrease since July 2009. The total
includes 555,000 urban poor; 1.25 million rural, drought-
affected individuals; and approximately 1.39 million
internally displaced persons (IDPs).

4. Assessment findings indicate a 15 percent decline in
the number of urban and rural individuals requiring
assistance since July 2009. The decline in rural
populations requiring humanitarian assistance is associated
with food security improvements in southern agricultural
areas resulting from an above-normal deyr harvest and
improved water and pasture availability. However, FSNAU
reported an increase in the number of rural individuals in
northern Somalia requiring assistance, noting that drought
conditions have left 290,000 pastoralists and agro-
pastoralists in crisis. Decreasing needs in urban areas,
particularly in northern Somalia, reflect price and
currency stabilization partially resulting from decreasing
import commodity prices. In central regions, FSNAU reports
that 70 percent of the population requires humanitarian
assistance due to ongoing drought conditions, as well as
escalating conflict and resulting population displacements.

5. IDPs remain the largest single population group in
crisis, representing 44 percent of the 3.2 million people
in need of humanitarian assistance in Somalia, with
insecurity continuing to be the primary cause for
displacement. FSNAU notes that the number of IDPs is likely
to increase due to ongoing and escalated conflict. On
January 19, the Office of the U.N. High Commissioner for
Refugees (UNHCR) revised downward the estimated number of
IDPs in Somalia from 1.5 million individuals, to
approximately 1.39 million individuals, including 275,000
long-term IDPs. The new IDP estimate reflects a downward
revision of the number of IDPs residing in Afgoye corridor
from 540,000 to 380,000 following a UNHCR-conducted
verification exercise.


6. Results from the deyr assessment indicate an above-
normal harvest production in Somalia, contributing 46
percent of the total annual crop production in Somalia.
The October to December deyr harvest typically contributes
30 to 35 percent of the total annual crop production.
FSNAU estimates a total 2009/2010 deyr cereal production in
south Somalia of 124,700 metric tons (MT), representing the
largest deyr cereal production in south Somalia
since 2001/2002. This is a 246 percent increase from the
2008 deyr cereal harvest in south Somalia and a 150 percent
increase compared to the 2004-2008 average. Including deyr
and off-season production, FSNAU estimates a total seasonal
cereal production in south Somalia of 126,400 MT, also
representing a significant increase compared to 2008 annual
cereal production levels in south Somalia and the 2004-2008

7. In northern and central pastoral areas, humanitarian
agencies have expressed concern regarding deteriorating
livestock conditions and milk production due to significant
water and pasture shortages. On December 17, FSNAU
reported that food security in Hiran and Galgadud regions
is likely to deteriorate due to below-normal rains and
limited recovery from consecutive seasons of drought.

8. According to FSNAU, 2009 commercial cereal imports
were above-normal, with nearly 700,000 MT imported during
the year, representing a 190 percent increase compared
to 2008 commercial cereal imports and 156 percent increase
compared to the 2005-2007 average. According to FSNAU,
total annual crop production typically meets approximately
40 percent of food needs in Somalia per year, while the
imports meet the remaining 60 percent of the needs.


9. Findings from 38 nutritional surveys, 27 urban site
assessments, information from 100 health centers, and
partner reports from selective feeding centers confirm
critical nutrition conditions in Somalia, with some of the
highest acute malnutrition rates in the world. According
to the results, one in six children in Somalia is acutely
malnourished and one in 22 is severely malnourished, with a
national median global acute malnutrition (GAM) rate of 16
percent and a severe acute malnutrition (SAM) rate of 4.2
percent, a slight decrease compared to GAM and SAM rates of
19 and 4.5 percent, respectively, reported by FSNAU in the
post-April to June seasonal assessment results released in
September 2009. FSNAU noted that successful humanitarian
interventions in areas designated as critical in the post-
gu assessment have prevented a further decline in overall
malnutrition rates, particularly in parts of central and
northern Somalia.

10. In south and central Somalia, FSNAU reports that one
in five children is acutely malnourished and one in 20 is
severely malnourished, with GAM rates of 19 percent and SAM
rates of 4.5 percent, significantly above the UN World
Health Organization GAM and SAM emergency thresholds of 15
percent and 2 percent, respectively. Countrywide,
approximately 240,000 children under five years of age are
acutely malnourished, of which 63,000 are severely
malnourished and require immediate life-saving

11. FSNAU reported particular concern regarding nutrition
conditions among IDP populations, as results indicate that
one in four children is acutely malnourished. FSNAU also
reports elevated mortality rates among pastoral populations
in Juba Region and central regions, as well as among IDP
populations in the Afgoye corridor. (Note: Nutrition
specific cable from USAID/OFDA forthcoming)


12. On January 30, UNHCR estimated that insecurity, inter-
clan fighting, and livelihood deterioration had displaced
approximately 82,000 individuals within Somalia since
January 1, with insecurity accounting for 98 percent of
total displacement. Of the total, internal displacement
between January 1 and 22 includes approximately 18,000
individuals displaced from and within Mogadishu, of which
13,900 people fled the city and 4,400 others fled to safer
areas within Mogadishu. In total, UNHCR estimates that 1.4
million IDPs reside in Somalia, including 1.11 million
individuals displaced since increased fighting in February
2007 and 275,000 long-term IDPs. However, insecurity and
fluid population movements, including secondary
displacement and limited returns, continue to undermine
efforts to accurately track IDP figures.

13. FSNAU reported that between July and December 2009,
insecurity remained high throughout Mogadishu, Middle and
Lower Juba, Bakool, Hiran, Galgadud, and Mudug regions. In
addition, security incidents have increasingly occurred in
the northern Somalia. Between January and June 2010, FSNAU
reports that insecurity is likely to produce continued and
renewed conflict; population displacement; destruction of
property; an increased number of checkpoints; disruption of
trade activities within Somalia; and closure of the Kenyan
border. FSNAU also noted the possibility of escalated
insecurity in rural areas.

USG Humanitarian Assistance in Somalia

14. On December 3, the UN launched the 2010 Consolidated
Appeals Process (CAP) for Somalia to help respond to the
ongoing humanitarian crisis. The appeal requests more than
USD 689 million, representing an estimated 19 percent
decrease from the revised requirements under the 2009 mid-
year review (Note: During the mid-year review, the UN
revised the original 2009 appeal requirement downwards from
USD 919 million to USD 849 million). UN staff reported
that the decrease reflects reassessments of food aid
requirements and improved coordination structures. As of
February 3, the UN reported that the 2010 CAP has received
nearly USD 34 million.

15. To date in FY 2010, the USG has provided more than USD
20 million in humanitarian assistance in Somalia, including
nearly USD 5.5 million from USAID/OFDA to support
agriculture and food security; water, sanitation, and
hygiene; economic recovery and market systems; protection;
and nutrition programs, as well as humanitarian
coordination and information management and the provision
of emergency relief supplies. In FY 2009, USAID/OFDA
provided more than USD 9 million in humanitarian assistance
to Somalia. To date in FY 2010, USAID/FFP has provided more
than 18,650 MT of P.L. 480 Title II emergency food
assistance, valued at approximately USD 14.7 million. In
FY 2009, USAID/FFP provided an estimated 160,000 MT of P.L.
480 Title II emergency food assistance, valued at more than
USD 124 million, to the U.N. World Food Program for
distribution to vulnerable populations in Somalia.


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