Southern Africa

Disaster-prone Madagascar battles flooding and drought

ANTANANARIVO, 5 March 2015 (IRIN) - Authorities in Madagascar are struggling to respond to increasingly severe flooding in the central highlands region of the country that includes the capital, Antananarivo, in addition to a prolonged drought in the south. full report

Three words of advice for WHO Africa's new chief

DAKAR, 24 February 2015 (IRIN) - WHO’s new regional director for Africa faces a tough road ahead, as she attempts to restore confidence in the organization following failures to act more quickly during the Ebola outbreak. full report

Who celebrity advocates are really targeting. And it’s not you.

LONDON, 13 February 2015 (IRIN) - In recent years, aid agencies have increasingly used celebrities to raise awareness and money for their causes. There’s just one problem: It doesn’t actually work. full report

Dire conditions for Malawi's flood survivors

BANGULA, 6 February 2015 (IRIN) - For those who have lost everything in southern Malawi’s Chikwawa District, just getting the next meal is now the priority. full report

In pictures: Southern Africa floods

NAIROBI, 20 January 2015 (IRIN) - More than a third of Malawi's territory has been affected by flooding, leading to a state of disaster to be declared in many parts of the country. This slideshow offers a glimpse of the devastation. full report

Eyewitness: Malawi’s floods

NAIROBI, 16 January 2015 (IRIN) - The scale and impact of the current flooding in southern Malawi seems to have caught the authorities by surprise. Some areas were deluged with a month’s worth of rain in 24 hours, and forecasts suggest there is more to come. full report

Nice and dirty – the importance of soil

NAIROBI, 16 January 2015 (IRIN) - Be it laterite, loam, peat or clay, soil is life. It's the foundation of food security, and so the UN has declared 2015 as the year to draw attention to the stuff. full report

South Africa's controversial new asylum form

JOHANNESBURG, 11 December 2014 (IRIN) - Refugee advocates in South Africa have reacted with dismay and skepticism to a planned revamp of the asylum application process which the government says is designed to distinguish economic migrants from people with a bona fide case for refugee status. full report

PRESS RELEASE: IRIN humanitarian news service to spin off from the UN

GENEVA, 20 November 2014 (IRIN) - After nearly 20 years as part of the United Nations, the humanitarian news service IRIN is spinning off to become an independent non-profit media venture, with the support of a major private donor full report

An ambitious plan to end statelessness

LONDON, 7 November 2014 (IRIN) - It is now 60 years since stateless people received recognition in international law, and the UN has two conventions (1954 and 1961) dedicated to their protection and the regularization of their situation. Yet an estimated 10 million people worldwide still suffer the problems and indignities of having no nationality. full report