Fighting Famine

Fighting Famine

Photo: AFP PHOTO /

Tens of millions of people are in need of humanitarian assistance as a result of man-made crises in South Sudan, Nigeria, and Yemen - all of which are driven by violent conflict - and Somalia, where ongoing conflict is compounding the effects of severe and prolonged drought. These crises are forcing people to flee within and beyond their country borders, disrupting agricultural production and livelihoods, and severing families from their social support systems. Ongoing violence - including deliberate attacks on civilians and relief workers - continues to prevent aid from reaching those most in need.

The United States is one of the largest donors of humanitarian assistance in all four crises. The assistance we provide includes: emergency food and nutrition assistance, safe drinking water, life-saving medical care, and shelter for those who have been displaced, both internally and as refugees, as well as protection for civilians. The United States is also supporting health, sanitation and hygiene services to help stop the spread of preventable disease - a leading cause of death during food crises.

Our assistance represents the best of America's generosity and goodwill, while improving our national security by strengthening relationships with nations and people around the world. We will continue to work with our international and local partners to provide the life-saving aid needed to avert famine and to support surrounding countries, mitigating the impact of these crises.

Last updated: May 22, 2018

May 22, 2018

The upcoming June-to-August rainy season will likely prompt additional humanitarian needs for an estimated 536,000 vulnerable people in northeast Nigeria, according to the Operational Inter-Sector Working Group (OISWG)—the body responsible for humanitarian inter-sector coordination activities in northeastern Nigeria, comprising UN agencies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and other stakeholders.

May 8, 2018

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) identified approximately 1.72 million internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Adamawa, Borno, and Yobe states as of mid-April, an increase of nearly 85,700 people—5.5 percent—from February. Borno hosts approximately 83 percent of the IDP population in the three states.

May 7, 2018

Increased fighting between government and opposition forces in Jonglei and Unity states since mid-April has generated population displacement, disrupted relief operations, and exacerbated needs. Violence associated with clashes in Unity resulted in at least three South Sudanese humanitarian worker deaths during April; the UN has recorded at least 100 aid worker deaths in South Sudan since the beginning of the crisis in December 2013.

May 7, 2018

From late March to late April, several Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA)-led Coalition airstrikes caused the deaths of at least 109 civilians, the UN reports. Additionally, escalating insecurity in Sa’dah and Ta’izz governorates resulted in the death of an International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) staff member and destroyed a water system that supplies safe drinking water to approximately 7,500 people. Relief actors issued statements condemning the incidents and emphasizing the importance of protecting civilians and civilian infrastructure

April 24, 2018

The Yobe State Commissioner for Health declared a cholera outbreak in Nigeria’s BadeLocal Government Area (LGA) in early April. Health actors recorded more than 340suspected cholera cases in the state, more than 95 percent of which were from Bade,between March 28 and April 16.