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ReliefWeb - Updates on Sierra Leone

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    Source: Amnesty International
    Country: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Gabon, Gambia, Guinea, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo, World

    Amnesty International launches new global campaign, ‘Brave’, to stop the wave of attacks against those defending human rights

    At least 87 human rights defenders and 48 journalists arbitrarily arrested in West Africa since 2014

    One protester killed every five days during demonstrations

    States across the region deploy unlawful killings, arrests, surveillance and administrative sanctions to inhibit human rights work

    Human rights defenders, journalists and protesters in West and Central Africa are facing ever-higher levels of persecution, intimidation and violence, warned Amnesty International today as it launched a new global campaign demanding an end to the onslaught of attacks against brave individuals standing up to injustice.

    The ‘Brave’ campaign calls on states in the region to recognize the legitimacy of human rights defenders by respecting their work, giving space for it and protecting them from threats. States should take concrete measures to achieve these aims including by adopting strong protection laws and revising or repealing laws used to target human rights defenders.

    “States across the region have deployed a broad and increasingly inventive range of tactics to stop people standing up against injustice and to coerce them into self-censorship, “said Alioune Tine, Amnesty International’s Regional Director for West and Central Africa.

    “By removing the right to protest, placing activists under surveillance, and intimidating them with threats and physical attacks, many governments are carrying out a full-frontal assault on human rights defenders.”

    In a briefing ‘"Shut down for speaking out: Human Rights Defenders under attack in West and Central Africa" published today, Amnesty International documents the mounting danger faced by those defending human rights in the region.

    The combination of mass surveillance, new technology, the misuse of laws and crackdowns on peaceful protests is exposing human rights defenders to dangerously high levels of risk, the briefing warns.

    In almost every country in West and Central Africa, people participating in peaceful protests have been repressed through the banning of demonstrations or by the use of the unnecessary or excessive force against protesters.

    Since January 2014, Amnesty International has documented 271 protesters killed - one every five days - and thousands more injured during protests across the region, although the true number is likely to be higher. The overwhelming majority of these killings and injuries were committed by the security forces who used teargas, batons and live ammunition to disperse protesters or armored vehicles to ram their way through the crowds, even when protests were peaceful. There is rarely, if ever, accountability for such heavy-handed repression.

    Arbitrary arrests and detentions and administrative measures

    Since January 2014 Amnesty International has documented the arbitrary arrest of at least 87 human rights defenders in West and Central Africa. In 2016 alone, 13 anti-slavery activists in Mauritania were brought before court on trumped up charges and sentenced to between three and 15 years in prison. In November last year, an Appeal Court acquitted and released three of them and reduced the sentence of the 10 others.

    In Chad, four pro-democracy activists were arrested in N’Djamena between March and April 2016 for planning to organize peaceful public demonstrations against the current President’s bid for re-election for a fifth term. They were found guilty of ‘incitement to an unarmed gathering’, and received suspended prison sentences after more than two weeks in detention.

    Several states including Cameroon, Chad, Guinea, Nigeria, Senegal and Togo introduced legislation which could be used to target human rights defenders, journalists and whistle-blowers in reprisal for their work, often in the name of countering terrorism and cybercrime.

    In Cameroon, anti-terror legislation originally introduced to respond to the security threat from Boko Haram, was used to silence civil society leaders in the English speaking regions who called for protests against discrimination.

    Administrative measures – such as delaying or denying the registration of NGOs to operate or restricting their funding - have also been used to prevent the work of human rights defenders. In Togo, for example, officials refused to deliver registration certificates to a group of LGBTI activists because they “challenged cultural and social norms”.

    “Human rights defenders are not enemies of the state; they are individuals who stand against injustice and take peaceful action to improve the human rights situation. Without their courage, our world is less fair, less just and less equal,” said Alioune Tine.

    Internet and social media restrictions

    Among the emerging trends is the use of new technologies and targeted surveillance, including online, to threaten and silence activists.

    Restrictions on the use of the internet are increasingly being used across the region. In Gabon, Gambia and the Republic of Congo access to the internet was cut off for between two and five days before and after Presidential elections in 2016, while social media was restricted around elections in Chad. In the most severe restrictions to date, the Internet was shut down in the Anglophone regions of Cameroon from January to April 2017 following protests about the use of French in courts and schools and demands for greater autonomy.

    Many states have passed legislation which restricts internet access and subjects human rights defenders to online surveillance. For instance, in Senegal, amendments to the Criminal Code and the Code of Criminal Procedure empower the authorities to restrict access to “illicit content” online and to hack into computers without judicial oversight.

    In Nigeria, the Cyber Crime Act, requires internet service providers to keep all traffic and other data of subscribers for two years and make that data available to law enforcement agencies upon request.

    Amnesty International urges the authorities in West and Central Africa to refrain from using language that disparages human rights defenders including by labelling them “criminals”, “foreign agents”, “terrorists”, or “undesirables”.

    “When they are not threatening or harassing them, governments are attempting to cultivate open hostility towards human rights defenders by peddling demonizing rhetoric that portrays activists as threats to national security,” said Alioune Tine.

    “It is a tribute to the brave men and women across the region that in spite of this continuing repression, they continue to fight for justice. We call on states to recognize and protect the legitimate work of those standing up for the inherent dignity and equal rights of all people.”

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    Source: Amnesty International
    Country: Benin, Cameroon, Chad, Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Gabon, Gambia, Guinea, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo, World

    Amnesty International lance une nouvelle campagne mondiale, Osons le courage, pour mettre un coup d’arrêt à la vague d’attaques dont sont victimes les hommes et les femmes qui défendent les droits humains.

    Au moins 87 défenseurs des droits humains et 48 journalistes ont été arrêtés arbitrairement en Afrique de l’Ouest depuis 2014.

    Tous les cinq jours, un manifestant est tué pendant un rassemblement.

    Les États de la région tentent de saper le travail des défenseurs des droits humains de plusieurs manières : homicides illégaux, arrestations, surveillance et sanctions administratives.

    En Afrique de l’Ouest et en Afrique centrale, les défenseurs des droits humains, les journalistes et les manifestants sont victimes de persécutions, de manœuvres d’intimidation et de violences d’un niveau sans précédent, a alerté Amnesty International mardi 16 mai 2017 lors du lancement de sa nouvelle campagne mondiale demandant l’arrêt des attaques contre celles et ceux qui ont le courage de combattre l’injustice.

    La campagne Osons le courage appelle les États de la région à reconnaître la légitimité des défenseurs des droits humains en respectant leur travail, en leur ménageant l’espace nécessaire à leurs activités et en les protégeant des menaces. Il faut que les États prennent des mesures concrètes en ce sens, notamment qu’ils adoptent des lois fortement protectrices et qu’ils révisent ou abrogent les textes utilisés pour attaquer les défenseurs des droits humains.

    « Les États de la région déploient un arsenal étendu de stratégies de plus en plus inventives pour empêcher les défenseurs de s’opposer à l’injustice ou les contraindre à l’autocensure, a déclaré Alioune Tine, directeur du programme Afrique de l’Ouest et Afrique centrale à Amnesty International.

    « En empêchant le droit de manifester, en plaçant des militants sous surveillance et en tentant de les intimider par des menaces et des agressions physiques, de nombreux États attaquent de front les défenseurs des droits humains. »

    Dans un rapport intitulé Les voix critiques étouffées. Les défenseurs des droits humains en danger en Afrique de l’Ouest et en Afrique centrale et rendu public mardi 16 mai, Amnesty International présente des éléments qui attestent du danger croissant auquel sont confrontés les défenseurs des droits humains dans la région.

    La combinaison de plusieurs types de mesures – surveillance de masse, recours aux nouvelles technologies, utilisation abusive des lois et répression des manifestations pacifiques – crée un niveau de danger sans précédent pour les défenseurs des droits humains, alerte le rapport d’Amnesty International.

    Dans presque tous les pays d’Afrique de l’Ouest et d’Afrique centrale, des manifestations pacifiques ont été interdites ou les autorités ont eu recours à une force injustifiée ou excessive contre des manifestants.

    Depuis janvier 2014, Amnesty International a dénombré 271 manifestants tués, soit un tous les cinq jours, et des milliers de blessés lors de rassemblements organisés dans la région, sachant que ce chiffre est probablement en deçà de la réalité. L’immense majorité de ces homicides et blessures sont imputables aux forces de sécurité, qui ont utilisé du gaz lacrymogène, des matraques et des munitions réelles pour disperser des manifestants ou des véhicules blindés pour fendre la foule, alors qu’il s’agissait de manifestations pacifiques. Les responsables présumés de cette répression brutale ne sont pratiquement jamais amenés à rendre des comptes.

    Arrestations et détentions arbitraires et mesures administratives

    Depuis janvier 2014, Amnesty International a enregistré au moins 87 arrestations arbitraires de défenseurs des droits humains en Afrique de l’Ouest et en Afrique centrale. En Mauritanie, rien qu’en 2016, 13 militants antiesclavagistes ont été traduits en justice pour des charges controuvées et condamnés à des peines allant de trois à 15 ans d’emprisonnement. En novembre 2016, une cour d’appel a relaxé et libéré trois d’entre eux et a allégé les peines des 10 autres.

    Au Tchad, quatre militants en faveur de la démocratie ont été arrêtés à N’Djamena entre mars et avril 2016 parce qu’ils projetaient d’organiser des manifestations pacifiques publiques pour s’opposer au fait que le président en exercice briguait un cinquième mandat. Ils ont été déclarés coupables d’« incitation à un rassemblement non armé » et condamnés à des peines d’emprisonnement avec sursis après avoir passé plus de deux semaines en détention.

    Plusieurs pays, comme le Cameroun, la Guinée, le Nigeria, le Sénégal, le Tchad et le Togo, ont instauré des lois qui sont susceptibles d’être utilisées contre des défenseurs des droits humains, des journalistes et des lanceurs d’alertes en représailles de leurs activités, souvent au nom de la lutte contre le terrorisme et la cybercriminalité.

    Au Cameroun, la législation antiterroriste adoptée initialement pour endiguer la menace représentée par Boko Haram a servi à réduire au silence des responsables de la société civile qui appelaient à manifester contre la discrimination dans les régions anglophones.

    Les autorités se sont aussi appuyées sur des mesures administratives – retard ou refus d’enregistrement d’organisations non gouvernementales (ONG), ce qui les empêche de fonctionner, ou restriction de leur financement, entre autres – pour empêcher les défenseurs des droits humains de mener leurs activités. Au Togo, par exemple, des fonctionnaires ont refusé de délivrer un certificat d’enregistrement à un groupe de militants en faveur des droits des lesbiennes, gays, personnes bisexuelles, transgenres et intersexuées (LGBTI) au motif qu’ils remettaient en cause les normes culturelles et sociales.

    « Les défenseurs des droits humains ne sont pas des ennemis de l’État, ce sont des personnes qui combattent l’injustice et engagent des actions pacifiques pour améliorer la situation des droits humains. Sans leur courage, notre monde serait moins juste, moins équitable, moins égalitaire », a déclaré Alioune Tine.

    Restrictions concernant Internet et les réseaux sociaux

    Parmi les nouvelles tendances, on peut citer le recours aux nouvelles technologies et à la surveillance ciblée, notamment en ligne, pour menacer et réduire au silence les militants.

    Les restrictions concernant l’utilisation d’Internet sont de plus en plus fréquentes dans la région. Au Gabon, en Gambie et en République du Congo, l’accès à Internet a été coupé pendant deux à cinq jours à l’approche et à la suite des élections présidentielles de 2016 et, au Tchad, les restrictions imposées pendant la période électorale ont porté sur les réseaux sociaux. Dans les régions anglophones du Cameroun, au plus fort des restrictions (de janvier à avril 2017), l’accès à Internet a été coupé après que des manifestations ont été organisées pour protester contre l’utilisation du français dans les tribunaux et les écoles et demander davantage d’autonomie.

    De nombreux États ont adopté des lois limitant l’accès à Internet en soumettant les défenseurs des droits humains à une surveillance de leurs activités en ligne. Au Sénégal, par exemple, des modifications du Code pénal et du Code de procédure pénale permettent aux autorités de restreindre l’accès à du « contenu illicite » en ligne et de pénétrer des systèmes informatiques sans aucun contrôle judiciaire. Au Nigeria, la Loi relative à la cybercriminalité exige des fournisseurs de services Internet qu’ils conservent pendant deux ans toutes les données relatives notamment au trafic de leurs abonnés, et qu’ils les mettent à la disposition des organes d’application des lois sur leur demande.

    Amnesty International exhorte les États d’Afrique de l’Ouest et d’Afrique centrale à s’abstenir de désigner les défenseurs des droits humains par des termes péjoratifs (« criminels », « agents de l'étranger », « terroristes » ou « indésirables », entre autres).

    « Lorsqu’elles ne les menacent pas ou ne les harcèlent pas, les autorités tentent d’alimenter un sentiment d’hostilité à l’égard des défenseurs des droits humains en les diabolisant et en les présentant comme une menace pour la sécurité nationale, a déclaré Alioune Tine.

    « Rendons hommage aux femmes et aux hommes courageux qui, dans toute la région, continuent de lutter pour la justice malgré cette répression permanente. Nous appelons les États à reconnaître et à protéger le travail légitime de celles et ceux qui défendent la dignité humaine et l’égalité des droits pour tous. »

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    Source: World Health Organization
    Country: Cabo Verde, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Guinea, Liberia, Madagascar, Niger, Nigeria, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Togo, United Republic of Tanzania, Zimbabwe


    • This weekly bulletin focuses on selected public health emergencies occurring in the WHO African region. The WHO Regional Office is currently monitoring 49 events: three Grade 3, six Grade 2, two Grade 1, and 38 ungraded events.

    • This week’s bulletin focuses on key ongoing events in the region, including the grade 3 humanitarian crises in Ethiopia, Nigeria and South Sudan, the grade 2 outbreak of meningitis in Nigeria as well as the outbreaks of Ebola virus disease (EVD) in the Democratic Republic of Congo and meningococcal disease in Liberia.

    • For each of these events, a brief description followed by public health measures implemented and an interpretation of the situation is provided.

    • A table is provided at the end of the bulletin with information on all public health events currently being monitored in the region.

    • Major challenges to be addressed include:

      • The need to scale up the response efforts to the EVD outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo, with particular emphasis on improving field operations in Likati.

      • Multisectoral engagement and mobilization of resources to sustain the multiple ongoing public health emergencies in the region.

    Event Description

    The Ebola virus disease (EVD) outbreak in Likati Health Zone, Bas Uele Province in the north-east of the Democratic Republic of Congo continues to evolve. Since our last report on 12 May up to 19 May 2017, a total of 21 suspected EVD cases have been reported in Likati Health Zone. The suspected cases are being investigated and will be classified accordingly.

    As of 19 May 2017, a total of 32 EVD cases [two confirmed, three probable and 27 suspected] have been reported. To date, four deaths have been reported, giving a case fatality rate of 13%. The reported cases are from five health areas, namely Nambwa (11 cases and two deaths), Muma (three cases and one death), Ngayi (14 cases and one death), Azande (two cases and no deaths), and Ngabatala (two cases and no deaths). Most of the cases presented with fever, vomiting, bloody diarrhoea and other bleeding symptoms and signs. The outbreak currently remains confined to Likati Health Zone. According to available information at this stage, no healthcare workers have been affected.

    Out of the five blood samples analysed at the national reference laboratory,
    Institut National de Recherche Biomédicale (INRB) in Kinshasa, two were confirmed as Zaire ebolavirus. The initial blood specimens have been shipped to the Centre International de Recherches Medicales (CIRMF) in Gabon for sequencing. Gabon has also confirmed the results provided by the INRB. A total of 416 close contacts have been registered in Likati Health Zone and are being monitored.

    This EVD outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo was notified to WHO by the Ministry of Health on 11 May 2017. The cluster of cases and deaths of previously unidentified illness had been reported since late April 2017. Likati Health Zone shares borders with two provinces in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and with the Central African Republic. The affected areas are remote and hard to reach, with limited communication and transport networks.

    Public health actions

    • The Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo has established a high level crisis management team, led by the Minister of Public Health, and working in close collaboration with technical partners, including WHO, UNICEF, MSF, ALIMA, etc. to coordinate the response to the outbreak.

    • On 18 May 2017, the Minister of Health held a joint press conference with the UNICEF and WHO Heads of Agencies. The press conference provided an update on the current EVD outbreak situation and ongoing response efforts.

    • On 18 May 2017, the Executive Director of the WHO Health Emergencies Programme and the Regional Director of the WHO Regional Office for Africa held a virtual press conference (VPC) in Geneva to provide journalists with the latest information on WHO’s response to the EVD outbreak.

    • The Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo has developed a comprehensive response plan to the EVD outbreak, amounting to US$ 14 million. The response plan and budget has been presented and discussed with partners.

    • The first shipment of logistics equipment is being transported to Likati and Nambwa to set up a WHO working base and support setting up the Ebola treatment centre that will be run by MSF. Two mobile laboratories have beem deployed from INRB in Kinshasa to the field.

    • Health education on preventive measures have been provided to the care givers and family members of suspected cases to limit exposure to the disease.

    • The identification and follow up of contacts is continuing in the affected areas. The structure for contact tracing is being strengthened.

    • Classification of the reported cases into confirmed, probable and suspected and development of transmission chain is being finalized. Case investigation including the identification of potential exposures is being conducted.

    Situation interpretation

    The EVD outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo continues to evolve as efforts are ongoing to scale up control measures on the ground. Accessibility to the affected areas has remained a major challenge, slowing down the pace to establish effective outbreak control measures. There is an urgent need to address the accessibility and communication challenges in order for control interventions to reach the affected populations. While the national authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo have institutional experience to respond to EVD outbreaks, external technical capacity and support are still required. Deployment of additional national and international experts to the epicentre of the outbreak needs to take place quickly. Meanwhile, the necessary logistics, tools and commodities should be made available at operational level. Setting up appropriate isolation facilities is critical to avoid propagation of infections at community and health facility levels.

    The Ministry of Health has finalized the national Ebola outbreak response plan and budget, amounting to US$ 14 million. This response plan needs to be supported by the international communities to ensure that the planned interventions are delivered to the affected people. WHO, in collaboration with the Global Outbreak Alert and Response Network (GOARN) will continue to mobilize partners to provide technical and logistical support to the response.

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    Source: World Food Programme
    Country: Sierra Leone

    FREETOWN - The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab for Africa (J-PAL Africa) are partnering on a programme to promote children’s health in Moyamba district, one of the districts in Sierra Leone most affected by chronic malnutrition.

    Children born with low birth weight are commonly stunted (displaying low growth for age). Later in life, they are at increased risk of chronic conditions including diabetes, hypertension and coronary heart disease. Much of the damage done by early childhood undernutrition is irreversible after what is known as the “thousand-day window” – the period covering pregnancy up and the first two years of life.

    This is why under the pilot programme, set to continue through 2018 in Moyamba district, 60,000 pregnant and nursing women, and 40,000 children aged six to 23 months, will receive monthly rations of specialised nutritious food when they visit a health clinic. During the period between birth and 6 months, support will be given to nursing mothers in order to promote exclusive breast feeding.

    “The food ration acts both as an element to prevent stunting and as an incentive for mothers to access health services,” explains J-PAL Africa Executive Director Laura Poswell.

    “Malnutrition makes it very difficult to rise out of poverty,” adds Peter Scott-Bowden, WFP Representative in Sierra Leone. “The importance of prevention cannot be overemphasized.”


    WFP is the world's largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide, delivering food assistance in emergencies and working with communities to improve nutrition and build resilience. Each year, WFP assists some 80 million people in around 80 countries.

    Follow us on Twitter: @WFP_WAfrica, @wfp_media

    For more information please contact:

    Francis Boima, WFP/Sierra Leone,

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    Source: UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
    Country: Burkina Faso, Côte d'Ivoire, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, Sierra Leone

    UNESCO (Dakar, Headquarters and IICBA), the UNESCO Asia-Pacific Centre for International Understanding (APCEIU) and the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie (OIF), represented by its Institut de la Francophonie pour l’éducation et la formation (IFEF), organized a capacity-building workshop on prevention of violent extremism through education (PVE-E) in West Africa and the Sahel. This event took place in Dakar, Senegal, from 9 to 11 May 2017.

    In today’s globalized and interconnected world, the growing threats and acts of violent extremism in West Africa and the Sahel create climates of fear and insecurity, which are adversely affecting peace and development efforts. Providing young people with knowledge, skills and values for them to nurture respect for all, building a sense of belonging to a common humanity and helping them to become responsible and active citizens is critical for a more just and sustainable world.

    UNESCO, APCEIU and IFEF jointly organized in Dakar, from 9 to 11 May 2017, a workshop aiming at strengthening capacities of education policy makers (Parliamentarians, Permanent Secretaries and Chiefs of Cabinet of Ministries of Education, senior officials in charge of teacher education or curricula) and senior teacher trainers to design and implement relevant and effective policies and practices that contribute to prevention of violent extremism (PVE) and eventually to sustainable peace in West Africa and the Sahel. About forty participants from Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, the Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal and Sierra Leone attended this workshop as well as education, PVE-E experts.

    First, presentations on international and regional normative instruments as well as on security and peace situation in the West African region and the Sahel provided an overview of the context.

    Then, in addition to the Clearinghouse on Global Citizenship Education (GCED) hosted by APCEIU, two tools on PVE-E developed by UNESCO were introduced: (1) a Guide on PVE for education policy makers, to support national efforts to integrate GCED into their education systems, and (2) a Teachers’ Guide on managing classroom discussions in relation to the PVE. OIF also presented the #LibresEnsemble (FreeTogether) Initiative launched to give a voice to young people to express their views on citizenship, freedom, diversity, living together, etc. through social media and education, as well as cultural, economic and artistic activities.

    Building on these tools and examples of PEV-E approaches and practices in formal, non-formal and informal education settings, country delegations drafted a roadmap for integration of PVE into education policies and practices, considering the context, the needs and capacities of respective countries.

    At the end of the workshop, participants expressed their commitment to reinforce advocacy amongst high-level authorities in their country, to suggest law and legal frameworks on PVE-E, to integrate PVE into education sector plans, curricula, education personnel training (formal, non-formal and informal) and to further involve communities.

    The organizers will ensure follow up on recommendations by developing a platform for exchange and experience sharing, establishing an exchange network, supporting countries in ownership and adaptation of the tools developed by UNESCO and OIF (pedagogical guide and #LibresEnsemble).

    "The most remarkable result is that everyone has had a prospective look. We hope that this way, national visions and strategies will gain ground and will really transform this reality. " said Mamadou Ndoye, former Minister of Education of Senegal and moderator of the workshop.

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    Source: Salesian Missions
    Country: Sierra Leone

    (MissionNewswire) Poor youth, the elderly and widows were those who benefited from a recent shipment of rice-meals thanks to an ongoing partnership between Salesian Missions and Feed My Starving Children, a nonprofit Christian organization committed to “feeding God’s children hungry in body and spirit.” More than 900 people in Sierra Leone have access to better nutrition thanks to this donation.

    The Salesian Community in Lungi and Bo including St. Teresa’s Primary School Bo City, Saint Augustine’s Primary School, Holy Cross Primary School and Mother Teresa’s preschool shared this donation. The schools offer feeding programs so youth are able to have at least one meal a day and are better able to focus on their studies. The rice-meal donation was also shared with some of the teachers in the schools.

    “Many of those participating in Salesian programs in Sierra Leone are malnourished,” says Father Mark Hyde, executive director of Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. “For students, this donated food not only encourages them to attend school, it allows them to focus on getting the education they need without worrying about where their next meal will come from. Children cannot learn on an empty stomach.”

    Feed My Starving Children’s Partner Assistance Program has allowed Salesian missionaries to share some of the rice-meals with other local nonprofit organizations. The Widows Welfare Association provided rice-meals to 540 widows—mostly the elderly, those living with HIV/AIDS, Ebola widows and recently widowed women who are finding it difficult to get food daily for their families and especially their children. Most of these widows are living below the poverty line and lack any means of livelihood that will provide them with a regular income in order to support their families.

    Veriocia Demby, who lives at New London in the back of St. Augustine’s School Lungi, lost her husband during the Ebola epidemic. He was the bread winner of the family, and now Veriocia has four children to take care of on her own. Two years after her husband’s death, she does not have enough money to pay the school fees for her children or enough food to eat at home. Veriocia became seriously ill and was taken to the hospital where she met Salesian missionaries in Lungi. She was malnourished and could not stand for a very long time. After weeks in the hospital, she was discharged. She explained her story to a Salesian missionary and asked for food aid to help her family. She has been the recipient of a weekly donation of a box of rice-meals to feed her family. Her health and that of her children has improved since the donation.

    “Salesian missionaries are an integral part of the existing infrastructure in many countries. Salesian Missions plays an important role in making sure aid from the United States reaches its destination country and gets into the hands of those who need it most,” says Fr. Hyde.

    According to the World Bank, more than 60 percent of Sierra Leone’s population lives in poverty with many living on less than $1.25 per day. The literacy rate is only 41 percent and 70 percent of young people in Sierra Leone are unemployed or underemployed as a result. The country was hard hit by the Ebola crisis. The World Health Organization (WHO) has reported that there were more than 14,124 total cases of Ebola and 3,956 deaths from the virus in Sierra Leone alone. Don Bosco Fambul was on the forefront of efforts to help prevent Ebola in communities throughout Sierra Leone and provide care for children left orphaned by the deadly epidemic. The organization recently received Sierra Leone’s Presidential Award in recognition of its contribution in fighting Ebola.


    Feed My Starving Children

    World Bank – Sierra Leone

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    Source: Government of Sierra Leone, World Health Organization, UN Children's Fund
    Country: Sierra Leone

    FREETOWN, 25 May 2017 – The National Malaria Control Programme of the Ministry of Health and Sanitation have pre-positioned around 4.3 million treated mosquito bed nets ahead of the planned nationwide mass distribution campaign on 1-10 June, 2017.

    Sierra Leone is one of seven countries in sub-Saharan Africa where more than a quarter of the population is infected with malaria at any one time, according to World Malaria Report (World Health Organization 2016), with nearly three in ten Sierra Leoneans suffering from the disease. Malaria contributes to an estimated twenty per cent of child mortality, and is the cause of nearly four in ten hospital consultations country-wide. Pregnant women are at particular risk from malaria, which contributes to high rates of miscarriage, pre-mature births and low birth weights.

    Four in ten children aged 6-59 months tested positive for malaria (via microscopy), according to survey data in the just published Sierra Leone Malaria Indicator Survey (2016). As stated in the Sierra Leone National Strategic Plan 2016-2020, all children under 5 and all pregnant women should sleep under a treated mosquito net every night to prevent malaria complications.

    “Our aim is for Sierra Leone to achieve universal coverage when it comes to mosquito net use by July 2017, with a target of at least 80 per cent of families sleeping inside the treated mosquito nets,” said Dr. Abu Bakarr Fofanah, Minister of Health and Sanitation. “Sierra Leone has made significant progress in malaria control, with an almost 30 per cent reduction in all new cases between 2010 and 2015, the highest reduction in West Africa.”

    Guy Warrington, British High Commissioner to Sierra Leone, said ‘‘We fully support the Government of Sierra Leone in their efforts to ensure more people are protected against malaria. UK aid in Sierra Leone has provided £5.7 million to procure half of the bed nets that will be distributed across the country during this campaign. This will save the lives of women and children in Sierra Leone and is part of our £240 million support to the President's Recovery Priorities. The UK is also committed to tackling malaria on a global scale, our funding makes up 10% of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria’s.”

    The nationwide bed net campaign is being funded by UK aid from the British people (also known as DFID) and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria, through UNICEF. In designing a robust campaign, the National Malaria Control Programme received strong technical support from the Alliance for Malaria Prevention, the World Health Organisation, the Leadership Management and Government Project, and UNICEF. Nationwide distribution and use of treated bed nets by every family will contribute significantly to the President’s Recovery goals of saving the lives of 600 women and 5,000 children.

    Like the treated mosquito net mass distribution campaign in 2014, this distribution will be an integrated Maternal and Child Health (Mama en Pikin Welbodi) week campaign and will include vitamin A supplementation for children 6-59 months and deworming tablets (Albendazole) for children 12-59 months.

    For more information please contact:

    • Solomon Rogers, Public Relations Officer, Ministry of Health and Sanitation,, Tel. +232 (0) 76 537 835 • Issa Davies, UNICEF Communications Officer,, Tel. +232 (0) 78 368 975 • Saffea Gborie, WHO Communications Officer,, Tel. +232 76 777 878

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    Source: Famine Early Warning System Network
    Country: Afghanistan, Côte d'Ivoire, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guatemala, Guinea, Haiti, Honduras, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Liberia, Mali, Nicaragua, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, World

    Drought-like conditions continue across Kenya, Somalia, and southern Ethiopia

    1. Below-average rainfall since late February has resulted in moisture deficits throughout many parts of southern South Sudan, Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia,
      Somalia, and northern Tanzania.

    2. Several consecutive weeks of below-average rainfall has led to early season moisture deficits and deteriorating ground conditions in parts of Ghana.

    3. Limited rainfall since March has led to developing moisture deficits across parts of Liberia, Cote d’Ivoire, and southern Guinea.

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    Source: World Health Organization
    Country: Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, World

    Making WHO fit for purpose in the 21st century

    Over the past decade, extraordinary progress has been made in transforming the World Health Organization (WHO), bringing it into the 21st century and positioning it not only as the world’s public health agency, but as forward-looking and fit-for-purpose.

    By developing innovative leadership, managerial structures and systems, the changes that WHO has undergone have resulted in increased effectiveness, efficiency, responsiveness, transparency and accountability. Above all, these reforms have been grounded in robust metrics to measure performance and have been integrated into organization-wide systems and processes.

    The need for change in WHO had long been a priority for WHO Member States, which first adopted results-based management in the programme budget for the biennium 2000–2001, structured around approximately 30 areas of work.

    A revised planning framework was introduced in 2006, based on a six-year medium-term strategic plan, with 13 strategic objectives linked to a 10-year general programme of work for the period 2006–2015. Some felt that WHO was leading the field among United Nations agencies in introducing resultsbased management, which was innovative at the time. Others, both within WHO and among some Member States, felt there was much further to go – particularly to show how all three levels of the Organization contribute to the achievement of corporate objectives.

    Member States’ appetite for improvements in WHO played a part in electing Dr Margaret Chan as Director-General in 2006. In her campaign, Dr Chan had recognized and made explicit her willingness to take on the challenges of modernizing and streamlining the Organization. Echoing Executive Board Members’ sentiments following her nomination, she said, “I agree: WHO needs to be leaner, more effective, and rapidly responsive to a changing world.” Setting the tone for the coming years, Dr Chan welcomed the opportunity to work with WHO’s constituency in her address to the World Health Assembly in May 2007, stating, “We face the challenge of making WHO perform more efficiently and effectively, getting all levels of WHO to work more cohesively, and motivating staff. I believe that WHO leads the United Nations in terms of results-based management, but there is still some way to go to improve accountability and transparency.” Three fundamental challenges were articulated as the drivers of change. First, WHO was overcommitted and overextended.

    It needed selective and strategically focused priorities that would best reflect the Organization’s comparative advantage in the changing global health landscape and lay the foundation for WHO’s leadership in the coming decades. Second, WHO’s role in global health governance and relation to other actors in international health required clarity. Third, when faced with new challenges and a rapidly changing environment, WHO needed to develop the capacity and culture to be able to respond with sufficient speed and agility.

    Ultimately, optimizing WHO’s governance, management and programmatic focus would enable the Organization to more effectively fulfil its constitutional mandate as the “directing and coordinating authority on international health work” and, most importantly, better serve Member States and communities in improving health. To make these changes a reality, WHO’s governing bodies defined three objectives:

    1. Improved health outcomes, with WHO meeting the expectations of its Member States and partners in addressing agreed global health priorities, focused on the actions and areas where the Organization has a unique function or comparative advantage and financed in a way that facilitates this focus.

    2. Greater coherence in global health, with WHO playing a leading role in enabling the many different actors to play an active and effective role in contributing to the health of all peoples.

    3. An Organization that pursues excellence, one that is effective, efficient, responsive, objective, transparent and accountable.

    Ten years after initiating this bold agenda, the Organization has evolved fundamentally while weathering some of the greatest health crises the modern world has seen. Anyone walking in the doors at WHO today finds an agency that is revitalized, ready for the challenges of this century, operating smoothly across its three levels – headquarters, regions and countries – and squarely engaged with partners and governments to tackle this era’s health challenges. This report tells the story of that transformation, from 2007 through to the current day.

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    Source: World Health Organization
    Country: Cabo Verde, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Guinea, Liberia, Madagascar, Niger, Nigeria, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Sudan, Togo, United Republic of Tanzania, Zimbabwe

    • This weekly bulletin focuses on selected public health emergencies occurring in the WHO African region. The WHO Regional Office is currently monitoring 49 events: three Grade 3, six Grade 2, two Grade 1, and 38 ungraded events.

    • This weekly update focuses on key ongoing events in the region, including the grade 3 humanitarian crises in South Sudan and Nigeria, the grade 2 acute watery diarrhoea outbreak in the context of the humanitarian situation in Ethiopia, the grade 2 outbreak of Ebola virus disease in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the grade 2 meningitis outbreak in Nigeria, the grade 2 cholera outbreak in Tanzania and the ongoing impact of the cyclone in Madagascar.

    • For each of these events, a brief description followed by public health measures implemented and an interpretation of the situation is provided.

    • A table is provided at the end of the report with information on all public health events currently being monitored in the region.

    • Major challenges to be addressed include:

      • The implementation of response plans for diseases with a seasonal pattern
      • The establishment of formal and informal data sharing mechanisms between neighboring countries

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    Source: UN News Service
    Country: Central African Republic, Chad, Haiti, Liberia, Mali, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, World

    31 May 2017 – Ten years on, the United Nations Standing Police Capacity (SPC) continues to bolster peacekeeping operations by providing immediate start-up capability and strengthening police components with timely support, advice and assistance.

    “The Standing Police Capacity [SPC] is a vital tool of UN peacekeeping across the entire spectrum from conflict prevention to peace sustainment,” said Jean-Pierre Lacroix, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, calling current SPC staff members “to continue to invest in peace by deploying and developing the capacity of national police services each time you deploy.”

    Established in 2007, the SPC filled a critical need in global peace operations by providing them with readily available police expertise. When deployed, the unit has made a positive contribution to missions’ police-related work and tasks, delivering a versatile range of products and services.

    “The SPC was established to provide the United Nations with a small corps of senior police officers and managers prepared to undertake urgent mission assessments and to organize the start-up of police components of peace operations” said Walter Wolf, the first SPC Chief.

    SPC has established police components in five peacekeeping operations, assisted 15 ongoing operations and supported five operations during reconfiguration, closures or transition.

    Haiti, Chad, Central African Republic, Liberia, Somalia, Sudan and South Sudan have been the major beneficiaries of the SPC, which has, in addition to integrating human rights into law enforcement and enhancing protection of civilians, worked in these countries to prevent and respond to sexual and gender-based violence, promote the role of women in peace and security and build effective, efficient police institutions.

    With 37 experts ready to rapidly deploy to police components of UN peacekeeping operations, special political missions, UN funds and programmes and other partners, SPC stands ready to assist.

    SPC Chief Maria Appelblom, one of the most senior police women in the Organization, told UN News about some of the tasks performed by the UN’s rapid response unit – from helping to start up missions to assisting with elections.

    “The Standing Police Capacity was with the team to start up the mission in Mali in 2013,” she said from Brindisi, Italy, where the unit is based. “And then one year later we started in Central African Republic. We were responsible in MINUSCA [UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic] for the planning of the visit of the Pope, but we were also working with UNDP and UN country teams.”

    “We have been involved in Sierra Leone,” she continued. “We have assisted in establishing community policing and this is now a concept that is going to be replicated in several districts in Sierra Leone. Right now, we are assisting in preparation for their elections next year, with all of the security arrangements around that.

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    Source: Government of the United Kingdom, Government of Sierra Leone, United Nations
    Country: Sierra Leone

    FREETOWN (31 May 2017)—Sierra Leone’s latest Maternal Death and Surveillance Report, released today at a launch in the capital, Freetown, calls for united actions from government, health workers, communities and partners to tackle the high number of maternal deaths in the country. In all, a total of 706 maternal deaths were reported during 2016, though the report suggests that the true figure may be much higher still. 

    “This latest report reveals an unacceptably high level of maternal deaths in Sierra Leone, which is a true tragedy for our nation,” said H.E. Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma, President of the Republic of Sierra Leone. “The Government, partners and I personally have committed to saving women’s lives through substantive investments in health services and quality of care. However there are also things each and every one of us can do to help keep our mothers safe. Together we kicked out Ebola—we can end maternal mortality together too.”

    According to the report, which was produced by the country’s Ministry of Health and Sanitation with support from partners, the main causes of maternal deaths, defined as any death that occurs in pregnancy or in the six weeks after delivery, were largely bleeding, pregnancy-induced hypertension, infection, and unsafe abortions. Indirect causes include anaemia and malaria during pregnancy. Close to 20 percent of maternal deaths were among teenagers (15-19 years). 

    “The United Nations and its agencies are deeply alarmed by the level of maternal deaths in Sierra Leone,” said Sunil Saigal, UN Resident Coordinator in Sierra Leone. “We remained dedicated to helping the Government and people of Sierra Leone build up their health system to end maternal mortality once and for all, and give the nation’s mothers the hope and future they deserve.”

    In response to the report, leaders including the President of Sierra Leone, the Minister of Health, Paramount Chiefs, representatives from development partners and UN agencies are calling on the entire country to take action to ensure safe delivery for all pregnant women. Women and families are asked to ensure that all pregnant women give birth in health facilities and to support family planning as an important first step to safe motherhood. It will also be critical to engage adolescents on the risks of early pregnancy and increase knowledge and access to adolescent-friendly health services, experts say. 

    The report estimates that up to that seven in ten maternal deaths currently go unreported, with gaps occurring especially when deaths occur outside of government maternity wards. This undermines health workers' ability to adequately address the causes of mothers dying. Communities are therefore urged to report any maternal death that happens to their nearest health worker.

    Partners also expressed their commitment to supporting the country to tackle the underlying causes of maternal deaths. Sally Taylor, Head of DFID Sierra Leone, said, “This report underlines the importance of taking urgent action to reduce maternal mortality. The UK is committed to supporting the Government of Sierra Leone to strengthen health systems, expand access to family planning, including for teenage girls, and provide free healthcare to children and pregnant and lactating women.” 

    Sierra Leone has one of the world’s highest maternal mortality rates, at an estimated 1,165 deaths per 100,000 live births according to government data. This is equivalent to eight unnecessary maternal deaths every day. 

     _This is a joint statement from the Government of Sierra Leone and UN partners: WHO, UNICEF and UNFPA._

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    Source: Save the Children
    Country: Afghanistan, Angola, Bangladesh, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Brazil, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Guinea, Honduras, India, Iraq, Kenya, Lao People's Democratic Republic (the), Malawi, Mali, Myanmar, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, United Republic of Tanzania, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), Viet Nam, World, Yemen


    For at least 700 million children worldwide – and perhaps hundreds of millions more – childhood has ended too soon. The major reasons included poor health, confl ict, extreme violence, child marriage, early pregnancy, malnutrition, exclusion from education and child labor.

    When taken together, these factors have created a global childhood crisis of massive proportions.
    For nearly a century, Save the Children has been fi ghting to save children from poverty and discrimination.
    This new report – the fi rst in an annual series – takes a hard look at the events that rob children of their childhoods. These “childhood enders” represent an assault on the future of children.

    Childhood should be a safe time of life for growing, learning and playing. Every child deserves a childhood of love, care and protection so they can develop to their full potential. But this is not the experience for at least a quarter of our children worldwide.

    The majority of these children live in disadvantaged communities in developing countries, where they have been bypassed by progress that has lifted up many of their peers. Many suffer from a toxic mix of poverty and discrimination – excluded because of who they are: a girl, a refugee, from an ethnic minority or a child with a disability. These threats to childhood are also present in high-income countries. All countries, rich and poor, can do a better job of ensuring every child enjoys the right to a childhood.

    In commemoration of International Children’s Day, Save the Children is launching a unique index exploring the major reasons why childhood comes to an early end. The End of Childhood Index focuses on a set of lifechanging events that signal the disruption of childhood.

    It ranks 172 countries based on where childhood is most intact and where it is most eroded. It shows which countries are succeeding, and failing, to provide conditions that nurture and protect their youngest citizens. The indicators used to measure the end of childhood are: under-5 mortality, malnutrition that stunts growth, out-of-school children, child labor, early marriage, adolescent births, displacement by confl ict and child homicide.

    Which children survive or die, learn or don’t, are protected or harmed, is no accident. Lost childhoods are a result of choices that exclude particular groups of children by design or neglect. Millions of children have their childhoods cut short because of who they are and where they live.

    There have been major gains for children in the last 25 years, but recent progress in fighting extreme poverty has often not reached those children who need it most – because of geography, gender, ethnicity, disability or because they are victims of conflict.

    Children's experience of childhood is largely determined by the care and protection they receive, or fail to receive, from adults. Children have the right to survival, food and nutrition, health and shelter. They also have the right to be encouraged and educated, both formally and informally. And they have the right to live free from fear, safe from violence and protected from abuse and exploitation.

    In 2015, world leaders gathered at the United Nations to make a bold commitment – to end poverty in all its forms by 2030 and protect the planet for future generations. Taken together, the Sustainable Development Goals they established envision a future in which all children enjoy their rights to health, education and protection – in short, their right to childhood.1 Crucially, signatories to the new agreement promised to ensure this would happen for all segments of society – regardless of income, geography, gender or identity. And they promised that those who are furthest behind – the most excluded in society – would be reached first.

    This pledge to leave no one behind must be upheld. Only then will we realize its potential to transform the lives of millions of children across the world, guaranteeing every last child the childhood they deserve.

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    Source: Save the Children
    Country: Afghanistan, Angola, Bangladesh, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Brazil, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Guinea, Honduras, India, Iraq, Kenya, Lao People's Democratic Republic (the), Malawi, Mali, Myanmar, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, United Republic of Tanzania, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), Viet Nam, World, Yemen


    Au moins 700 millions d’enfants à travers le monde (et sans doute des centaines de millions d’autres) sortent de l’enfance trop tôt. Les principales raisons incluent les problèmes de santé, les conflits, la violence extrême, le mariage des enfants, les grossesses précoces, la malnutrition, la privation d’éducation et le travail des enfants.

    Associés les uns aux autres, ces facteurs ont engendré une crise mondiale qui frappe les enfants dans des proportions considérables. Depuis près d’un siècle, Save the Children se bat pour sortir les enfants de la pauvreté et les sauver de la discrimination. Ce nouveau rapport (le premier d’une série annuelle) examine attentivement les événements qui détruisent des enfances. Ces « causes de privation de l’enfance » constituent une atteinte à l’avenir des enfants.

    L’enfance devrait être une période consacrée à grandir, à apprendre et à jouer en toute sécurité. Chaque enfant mérite de l’amour, de l’attention et une protection durant son enfance pour pouvoir développer pleinement son potentiel. Ce n’est pourtant pas l’expérience que vit au moins un quart des enfants dans le monde.

    La majorité d’entre eux vivent au sein de communautés défavorisées dans des pays en développement, où ils n’ont pas bénéficié des progrès qui ont tiré bon nombre de leurs pairs vers le haut. Beaucoup souffrent d’un cocktail toxique de pauvreté et de discrimination, étant exclus en raison de ce qu’ils sont : une fille, un réfugié, un membre d’une minorité ethnique ou un enfant handicapé. Ces menaces qui pèsent sur l’enfance existent également dans les pays à revenu élevé. Tous les pays, riches et pauvres, peuvent faire davantage pour s’assurer que chaque enfant jouisse de son droit à l’enfance.

    Pour commémorer la Journée internationale des droits de l’enfant, Save the Children lance un indice unique qui étudie les principales raisons pour lesquelles l’enfance prend fin prématurément. L’Indice de privation de l’enfance se concentre sur un ensemble d’événements décisifs qui indiquent un bouleversement de l’enfance. Il classe 172 pays en fonction de la situation de l’enfance, de la plus préservée à la plus érodée. Il montre quels pays parviennent, ou ne réussissent pas, à offrir des conditions permettant d’élever et de protéger leurs plus jeunes citoyens. Les indicateurs suivants sont utilisés pour mesurer la privation de l’enfance : mortalité des enfants de moins de cinq ans, malnutrition retardant la croissance, enfants déscolarisés, travail des enfants, mariage précoce, grossesses chez les adolescentes, déplacements provoqués par les conflits et homicides infantiles.

    La survie ou le décès d’un enfant, la possibilité qu’il a ou non d’apprendre, sa protection ou les préjudices qu’il subit ne sont pas le simple fruit du hasard. Les enfances brisées résultent de choix qui excluent certains groupes d’enfants, volontairement ou par négligence. Des millions d’enfants voient leur enfance écourtée à cause de leur identité ou de leur lieu de vie.

    D’énormes avancées ont été réalisées en faveur des enfants ces 25 dernières années, mais les progrès récemment accomplis dans la lutte contre l’extrême pauvreté n’ont souvent pas profité aux enfants qui en ont le plus besoin, à cause de leur situation géographique, de leur sexe, de leur origine ethnique ou d’un handicap, ou parce qu’ils sont victimes de conflits.

    L’expérience de l’enfance repose en grande partie sur l’attention et la protection que les adultes apportent (ou non) à l’enfant. Les enfants ont un droit à la survie, à l’alimentation et à la nutrition, à la santé et à un abri. Ils ont également le droit d’être encouragés et éduqués, de manière formelle et informelle. Ils ont en outre le droit de ne pas vivre dans la peur et la violence et d’être protégés contre la maltraitance et l’exploitation.

    En 2015, les dirigeants du monde se sont rassemblés aux Nations Unies pour prendre un engagement ambitieux : mettre fin à la pauvreté sous toutes ses formes d’ici 2030 et protéger la planète pour les futures générations. Dans leur ensemble, les objectifs de développement durable qu’ils ont fixés dépeignent un avenir où tous les enfants jouiront de leurs droits à la santé, à l’éducation et à la protection ; en résumé, leur droit à l’enfance. Fait crucial, les signataires du nouvel accord ont promis de veiller à ce que cela se produise pour toutes les sphères de la société, quels que soient les revenus, la situation géographique, le sexe ou l’identité. Ils ont également promis que les plus laissés pour compte (les plus exclus de la société) seraient atteints les premiers.

    Cette promesse de n’oublier personne doit être tenue. Ce n’est qu’à cette condition que nous concrétiserons son potentiel de transformation de millions de vies d’enfants dans le monde, en garantissant à chacun, sans exception, de jouir de l’enfance qu’il mérite.

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    Source: Save the Children
    Country: Afghanistan, Angola, Bangladesh, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Brazil, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Guinea, Honduras, India, Iraq, Kenya, Lao People's Democratic Republic (the), Malawi, Mali, Myanmar, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, United Republic of Tanzania, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), Viet Nam, World, Yemen


    Al menos 700 millones de niños y niñas en el mundo —y probablemente cientos de millones más— han dejado de disfrutar de su niñez demasiado temprano. Esto se debe a una variedad de causas, como enfermedades, conflictos, la violencia extrema, el matrimonio infantil, el embarazo precoz, la malnutrición, la exclusión de la educación y el trabajo infantil.

    La combinación de estos factores ha tenido un gravísimo impacto en la niñez de todo el mundo.
    Desde hace casi un siglo, Save the Children lucha por librar a la infancia de la pobreza y por acabar con la discriminación. Este nuevo informe —el primero de una serie anual— analiza en profundidad los hechos que impiden a los niños y las niñas disfrutar de su niñez. Estos peligros para la niñez atentan contra el futuro de los niños y las niñas.

    La niñez debería ser una etapa de la vida en que los niños y las niñas puedan crecer, aprender y jugar en un entorno seguro. Todos ellos merecen una niñez rodeada de amor, cuidado y protección para poder desarrollar su pleno potencial. Sin embargo, por lo menos un 25 por ciento de los niños y las niñas del mundo no goza de estos derechos.

    La mayoría de estos niños y niñas viven en comunidades desfavorecidas en los países en desarrollo, donde el progreso, que ha aliviado a muchos de sus pares, no los ha beneficiado. Muchos de estos niños y niñas sufren una mezcla dañina de pobreza y discriminación, y se los excluye debido a quiénes son: niñas, refugiados, miembros de minorías étnicas o niños y niñas con algún tipo de discapacidad. Estos peligros para la niñez también están presentes en los países de ingresos altos. Todos los países, tanto ricos como pobres, pueden redoblar los esfuerzos para asegurar que toda la infancia disfrute de sus derechos.

    En conmemoración del Día del Niño, Save the Children presenta un índice único que analiza las razones principales por las que el disfrute de la niñez se interrumpe. El Índice de Peligros para la Niñez se centra en un conjunto de hechos que tienen un profundo impacto en la vida de los niños y las niñas, y que les impide vivir plenamente su niñez. El índice clasifica 172 países, desde aquellos donde la infancia se encuentra más intacta hasta aquellos en que se encuentra más afectada. Indica los países que están consiguiendo logros y los que no están obteniendo avances a la hora de asegurar las condiciones para la crianza y la protección de sus ciudadanos más jóvenes. Para medir los factores que ponen en peligro a la niñez, se han utilizado los siguientes indicadores: la mortalidad de niños y niñas menores de cinco años, la malnutrición que provoca retraso del crecimiento, la infancia que no va a la escuela, el trabajo infantil, el matrimonio precoz, los partos de adolescentes, los desplazamientos debido a conflictos y los homicidios de niños y niñas.

    Qué niños y niñas sobreviven o mueren, aprenden o no aprenden y están protegidos o sufren daños no es producto de la casualidad. Que un niño o una niña no pueda disfrutar de su niñez es el resultado de decisiones que excluyen, de manera intencional o por negligenciaa grupos específicos de niños y niñas. Millones de niños y niñas no pueden tener una niñez plena debido a quiénes son y dónde viven.

    Durante los últimos 25 años se han conseguido importantes logros para la infancia, pero el reciente progreso alcanzado en la lucha contra la pobreza extrema no ha beneficiado, en general, a los niños y las niñas que más lo necesitan debido al lugar donde viven, su género, su origen étnico o su discapacidad, o porque son víctimas de un conflicto.

    El grado en que un niño o una niña puede disfrutar de su niñez depende en gran medida del cuidado y la protección que recibe —o que no recibe— por parte de los adultos. Los niños y las niñas tienen el derecho a la supervivencia, la alimentación y la nutrición, la salud y la vivienda. También tienen el derecho a recibir estímulo y educación tanto de manera formal como informal.
    Asimismo, tienen derecho a vivir sin miedo, sin violencia y sin sufrir abusos y explotación.

    En 2015, los líderes mundiales se reunieron en las Naciones Unidas para asumir un compromiso audaz: acabar con la pobreza en todas sus formas para el año 2030 y proteger el planeta para las generaciones futuras.
    En su conjunto, los Objetivos de Desarrollo Sostenible que se fijaron representan la visión de un futuro en el que toda la infancia disfrute de su derecho a la salud, la educación y la protección: en otras palabras, de su derecho a la niñez.2 Lo más importante es que los signatarios del nuevo acuerdo prometieron asegurar que este objetivo se cumpliera en todos los segmentos de la sociedad, sin importar el nivel de ingresos, el lugar, el género o la identidad. Además, también prometieron que quienes se encuentran más rezagados —es decir, los más excluidos de la sociedad— serían los primeros a quienes se llegaría.

    Esta promesa de no dejar a nadie atrás debe respetarse. Solo así nos daremos cuenta de su potencial para transformar la vida de millones de niños y niñas en todo el mundo, con el fin de garantizar a toda la infancia la niñez que merece.

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    Source: UN News Service
    Country: Central African Republic, Chad, Haiti, Liberia, Mali, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, World

    31 mai 2017 – Dix ans après sa création, la Force de police permanente des Nations Unies (SPC) continue de renforcer les opérations de maintien de la paix en offrant des capacités d'opérations immédiates et en renforçant les composantes de police avec un soutien, un conseil et une aide rapides.

    « La Force de police permanente des Nations Unies est un outil essentiel du maintien de la paix de l'ONU à tous les niveaux, de la prévention des conflits au soutien à la paix », a souligné le Secrétaire général adjoint aux opérations de maintien de la paix, Jean-Pierre Lacroix.

    Le chef du maintien de la paix de l'ONU a appelé les membres actuels du personnel SPC « à continuer d'investir dans la paix » en déployant et en développant les capacités des services de police nationale chaque fois qu'ils sont envoyés mission.

    Établie en 2007, la Force de police permanente répond à un besoin critique des opérations de paix en fournissant à ces dernières une expertise policière disponible rapidement. Lors de ses déploiements, la SPC a positivement contribué aux tâches de police des missions de maintien de la paix, offrant une gamme polyvalente de produits et de services.

    « La SPC a été créée pour fournir aux Nations Unies un petit corps d'officiers de police et de cadres supérieurs prêts à entreprendre des évaluations de mission urgentes et à organiser le démarrage des éléments de police des opérations de paix », rappelle Walter Wolf, le premier chef de la Force de police permanente.

    A ce jour, la SPC a établi des composantes de police dans cinq opérations de maintien de la paix, aidé 15 opérations en cours et soutenu cinq opérations lors de leur reconfigurations, fermetures ou transitions.

    Haïti, le Tchad, la République centrafricaine, le Libéria, la Somalie, le Soudan et le Soudan du Sud ont été les principaux bénéficiaires de la Force de police permanente de l'ONU. En plus d'intégrer les droits de l'homme au maintien de l'ordre et au renforcement de la protection des civils, la SPC a travaillé dans ces pays pour prévenir et répondre aux violences sexuelles et sexistes, promouvoir le rôle des femmes dans la paix et la sécurité et créer des institutions de police efficaces.

    Avec 37 experts prêts à être déployer rapidement auprès des composantes de police des opérations de maintien de la paix, des missions politiques spéciales, des fonds et des programmes de l'ONU et d'autres partenaires, la SPC est opérationnelle à tout moment.

    Maria Appelblom est la chef actuelle de la Force de police permanente des Nations Unies. A ce titre, elle est l'une des plus importantes femmes policières de l'Organisation chargée de superviser les missions de cette unité d'intervention rapide impliquée dans le démarrage de missions ou l'assistance pour l'organisation d'élections.

    « La Force de police permanente était avec l'équipe qui a démarré la mission au Mali (Mission multidimensionnelle de stabilisation intégrée au Mali - MINUSMA) en 2013 », a déclaré Mme Appelblom dans un entretien accordé à ONU Info depuis Brindisi, en Italie, où la SPC est basée.

    « Et un an plus tard, nous avons commencé en République centrafricaine. Nous avons été responsables au sein de la Mission multidimensionnelle de stabilisation intégrée en République centrafricaine (MINUSCA) de la planification de la visite du Pape, mais nous travaillions également avec les équipes pays du PNUD et des Nations Unies », a-t-elle souligné.

    « Nous avons été engagés en Sierra Leone », a poursuivi Mme Appelblom. « Nous avons contribué à la mise en place de la police de proximité et c'est maintenant un concept qui sera reproduit dans plusieurs districts de Sierra Leone. À l'heure actuelle, nous aidons à préparer leurs élections prévues l'année prochaine, avec tous les dispositifs de sécurité que cela implique ».

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    Source: Famine Early Warning System Network
    Country: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cabo Verde, Chad, Côte d'Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo

    Le Réseau de systèmes d’alerte précoce contre la famine (FEWS NET) surveille les tendances des prix des aliments de base dans les pays vulnérables à l'insécurité alimentaire. Pour chaque pays et chaque région couvert par FEWS NET, le Bulletin des prix fournit un ensemble de graphiques indiquant les prix mensuels de l’année commerciale en cours pour certains centres urbains, et permettant à l’utilisateur de comparer les tendances actuelles à la fois aux moyennes quinquennales, qui indiquent les tendances saisonnières, et aux prix de l'année précédente.

    L'Afrique de l’Ouest peut être divisée en trois zones agro-écologiques ou en trois bassins commerciaux (bassins de l’ouest, bassin du centre, bassin de l’est). Les deux sont importants pour l'interprétation du comportement et de la dynamique du marché.

    Les trois principales zones agro-écologiques incluent la zone Sahélienne, la zone Soudanaise et la zone Côtière où la production et la consommation peuvent être facilement classifiées. (1) Dans la zone Sahélienne, le mil constitue le principal produit alimentaire cultivé et consommé en particulier dans les zones rurales et de plus en plus par certaines populations qui y ont accès en milieux urbains. Des exceptions sont faites pour le Cap Vert où le maïs et le riz sont les produits les plus importants, la Mauritanie où le blé et le sorgho et le Sénégal où le riz constituent des aliments de base. Les principaux produits de substitution dans le Sahel sont le sorgho, le riz, et la farine de manioc (Gari), avec les deux derniers en période de crise. (2)

    Dans la zone Soudanienne (le sud du Tchad, le centre du Nigéria, du Bénin, du Ghana, du Togo, de la Côte d'Ivoire, le sud du Burkina Faso, du Mali, du Sénégal, la Guinée Bissau, la Serra Leone, le Libéria) le maïs et le sorgho constituent les principales céréales consommées par la majorité de la population. Suivent après le riz et les tubercules particulièrement le manioc et l’igname. (3) Dans la zone côtière, avec deux saisons de pluie, l’igname et le maïs constituent les principaux produits alimentaires. Ils sont complétés par le niébé, qui est une source très significative de protéines.
    Les trois bassins commerciaux sont simplement connus sous les noms de bassin Ouest, Centre, et Est. En plus du mouvement du sud vers le nord des produits, les flux de certaines céréales se font aussi horizontalement. (1) Le bassin Ouest comprend la Mauritanie, le Sénégal, l’ouest du Mali, la Sierra Leone, la Guinée, le Libéria, et la Gambie où le riz est le plus commercialisé.

    (2) Le bassin central se compose de la Côte d'Ivoire, le centre et l’est du Mali, le Burkina Faso, le Ghana, et le Togo où le maïs est généralement commercialisé. (3) Le bassin Est se rapporte au Niger, Nigéria, Tchad, et Bénin où le millet est le plus fréquemment commercialisé. Ces trois bassins commerciaux sont distingués sur la carte ci-dessus.

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    Source: UNAIDS
    Country: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Côte d'Ivoire, Gabon, Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, World

    Only 1.8 million people of the 6.5 million people living with HIV in western and central Africa were on antiretroviral therapy at the end of 2015. This 28% treatment coverage of people living with HIV in the region contrasts with the 54% coverage in eastern and southern Africa in the same year.

    In response to this HIV treatment shortfall in western and central Africa, UNAIDS, the World Health Organization (WHO) and other partners in the region have developed country emergency catch-up plans to accelerate the AIDS response. These plans call for tripling HIV treatment coverage within the next three years.

    At a meeting on the sidelines of the 70th World Health Assembly to support the catch-up plan, health ministers and other representatives of countries in the region vowed to strengthen government leadership, make structural changes in their health systems and strengthen accountability.

    The meeting, which was organized by the WHO Regional Office for Africa and UNAIDS, was attended by the health ministers of Benin, Burkina Faso, the Central African Republic, Chad, Côte d’Ivoire, Gabon, Liberia and Nigeria and representatives of Cameroon, Guinea and Sierra Leone. They all collectively agreed to put in place strong measures to accelerate HIV treatment in their countries.

    All the participants agreed that health-service delivery models had to be transformed, notably by community health workers taking a bigger role in health-care delivery. WHO and UNAIDS will continue to work with the countries as they implement their plans for increasing access to HIV treatment.

    UNAIDS is working with countries to achieve the commitment in the 2016 United Nations Political Declaration on Ending AIDS of ensuring that 30 million people living with HIV have access to treatment through meeting the 90–90–90 targets by 2020.

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    Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation
    Country: Guinea-Bissau, Sierra Leone

    More than a quarter of people in Sierra Leone - at least two million - suffer from malaria, which accounts for a fifth of the country's child deaths

    DAKAR, June 1 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Millions of insecticide-treated bed nets are being delivered to protect people from malaria in the West African nations of Guinea-Bissau and Sierra Leone, where the mosquito-borne disease is one of the biggest killers, aid agencies said on Thursday.

    The countries' health ministries are working with United Nations agencies and local partners in a drive to ensure every household receives at least one bed net in the coming weeks.

    "This is not just a distribution drive but also a mass information campaign," said John James, representative for the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) in Sierra Leone.

    "Teams will be going door-to-door, and using social media and radio to raise awareness ... the goal is to reach every last house," James told the Thomson Reuters Foundation by phone.

    More than a quarter of people in Sierra Leone - at least two million - suffer from the disease, which accounts for a fifth of the country's child deaths and four in 10 of its hospital admissions, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

    Yet the number of new malaria cases in the country dropped by almost a third between 2010 and 2015, the biggest reduction of the disease in West Africa, Abu Bakarr Fofanah, Sierra Leone's minister of health and sanitation, said in a statement.

    Malaria is the leading causing of death in Guinea Bissau - accounting for almost a sixth of all deaths, the U.N. says.

    "Mosquito nets are the most effective barrier against malaria and can make the difference between life and death," said Aygan Kossi, the WHO representative in Guinea Bissau.

    The world has made huge strides against malaria since 2000, with death rates plunging by 60 percent and at least six million lives saved globally, according to the WHO.

    However efforts to end one of the world's deadliest diseases - which kills around 430,000 people a year - are under threat as mosquitoes become increasingly resistant to measures such as insecticide-treated bed nets and anti-malarial drugs.

    Ghana, Kenya and Malawi will pilot the world's first malaria vaccine from 2018, offering it for babies and children in high-risk areas as part of real-life trials, the WHO said in April.

    (Writing By Kieran Guilbert, Editing by Belinda Goldsmith; Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women's rights, trafficking, property rights, climate change and resilience. Visit

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    Source: Famine Early Warning System Network
    Country: Afghanistan, Côte d'Ivoire, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guatemala, Guinea, Haiti, Honduras, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Liberia, Mali, Nicaragua, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, World

    Despite increased rainfall in northern Ethiopia, Somalia and south-eastern Ethiopia remain dry

    Africa Weather Hazards

    1. Below-average rainfall since late February has resulted in moisture deficits throughout many parts of southern South Sudan, Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia, Somalia, and northern Tanzania.
    2. Limited rainfall since March has led to developing moisture deficits across parts of Liberia, Cote d’Ivoire, and southern Guinea.

    Central Asia Weather Hazards

    During late May, temperatures averaged above-normal across much of Central Asia by 3-12°C. The largest warm anomalies were observed throughout the southern parts of Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan and low-lying areas of northern Afghanistan. Next week, near to above-normal temperatures are forecast to continue and an abnormal heat is posted over the central portions of the region, where maximum temperature is forecast to exceed 4°C.

    From May 23-29, light to locally moderate rain fell over northern Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, while little to no rainfall was recorded elsewhere. Although negative rainfall anomalies persisted across north-central Afghanistan over the past ninety days, recent vegetation indices showed near neutral conditions across the area. For next week, drier weather is expected to continue over much of Central Asia, except northern Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, and Kyrgyzstan, where light to locally moderate (up to 50mm) showers are possible.

    Central America and the Caribbean Weather Hazards

    No hazards posted.

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