Horn of Africa

Migrant detention "abuse" can scar children for life

BANGKOK, 21 October 2014 (IRIN) - An increasing number of migrant children are being detained in countries where they are seeking asylum despite a growing body of scientific evidence that such incarceration leads to long-term psychological and developmental difficulties. full report

Analysis: The state of state-building in Somalia

NAIROBI, 21 October 2014 (IRIN) - A fence-mending deal signed this month by Somalia and Puntland has variously been hailed as a blueprint for stability and state-building in the wake of decades of civil war, and dismissed as a recipe for renewed inter-clan violence. full report

How to boost food production in Africa

ADDIS ABABA, 15 September 2014 (IRIN) - Smallholder farmers, who hold over 80 percent of all farms in sub-Saharan Africa, are struggling to adapt to rapidly rising temperature and erratic rains, according to the 2014 Africa Agriculture Status Report (AASR), released on 3 September in Addis Ababa. full report

Food security alarm for east, central Africa

NAIROBI, 13 August 2014 (IRIN) - Some 20 million people are facing acute food insecurity in eastern and central Africa, with most of them being at “crisis” and “emergency” levels, according to aid agencies. This figure compares unfavorably with 15.8 million people in July 2013. full report

Ethiopia’s game-changing abortion law

ADDIS ABABA, 8 August 2014 (IRIN) - After decades battling high maternal death rates - at least a third of which were due to botched abortions - Ethiopia took a stand: it prioritized newborn and maternal health, and in 2005 it relaxed its abortion law in an effort to save women’s lives. full report

Briefing: Somaliland, oil and security

HARGEISA, 7 August 2014 (IRIN) - The proposed deployment of armed contingents to protect oil installations in the self-declared Republic of Somaliland risks further destabilizing a region rife with disputes over sovereignty, boundaries and oil concessions. full report

Building food security in Ethiopia

AFAR (NORTHEASTERN ETHIOPIA) , 18 July 2014 (IRIN) - Ethiopia’s Productive Safety Net Programme (PSNP), set up in 2005, aims to make fully food secure the millions of people still dependent on food aid, provide support to the vulnerable to prevent the depletion of livestock, and create productive assets at community level. But nearly a decade on and over US$3 billion spent, how successful has it been? full report

A deadly Ramadan in Somalia

MOGADISHU/NAIROBI, 15 July 2014 (IRIN) - Militant group Al-Shabab has lived up to its promise to step up attacks in Somalia, mainly against government installations and personnel, during the holy month of Ramadan, which began on 29 June. Over 30 people have been killed in Mogadishu alone. full report

Hundreds of foreigners holed up in South Sudan camps

JUBA, 14 July 2014 (IRIN) - Among the 100,000 civilians holed up in UN bases in South Sudan since fighting broke out in mid-December 2013 between supporters and opponents of President Salva Kiir are several hundred citizens from Eritrea, Somalia and Ethiopia. full report

New thinking needed on food aid for refugees in Africa

JOHANNESBURG, 7 July 2014 (IRIN) - The World Food Programme (WFP) and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) have launched an urgent appeal to address a funding shortfall that has already resulted in food ration cuts for a third of all African refugees. As of mid-June, nearly 800,000 refugees in 22 African countries have seen their monthly food allocations reduced, most of them by more than half. full report