The ‘Ukraine effect’ on the world’s poorest and most vulnerable
The war in Ukraine will have catastrophic ripple effects on people in the poorest and most conflict-ridden corners of the world.
Afghanistan is facing a total economic meltdown
Traveling around Kabul a few weeks ago, the city felt worlds apart from my last visit in 2019 — and not just because a 20-year war had finally ended. The economy is spiralling out of control. And unless money starts flowing soon, a total economic collapse will plunge Afghans into a humanitarian catastrophe.
Afghanistan’s crisis stretches far beyond Kabul airport
With the withdrawal of international troops from Kabul airport, focus now shift to the rest of Afghanistan which is on the brink of a massive humanitarian crisis.
Aid workers are staying in Afghanistan - as they do in crises globally. We must protect them
As the world watches the unfolding crisis in Afghanistan, aid workers are staying to help while bracing for troubling times ahead. More must be done to protect humanitarians on the frontlines across the globe.
On World Refugee Day, we must choose action over words to help Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh
For the past twenty years, June 20 has provided an occasion for the global community to recognize and honor the strength, struggles, and resilience of refugees. Now, World Refugee Day must be more than words. It must be a catalyst for urgent action to address the rights of people forced to flee.
Gaza: A Hell on Earth
As the concrete dust settles in Gaza following the declared ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, it is easy to heave a sigh of relief and think that we are back to normal. But normal for Palestinians, without a political solution that allows for peaceful coexistence, is in reality just a hiatus until the next round of conflict.
G7 leaders know what needs to be done to prevent famines, but will they act?
Today’s G7 meeting is a potential gamechanger for preventing famine in crisis countries if world powers step up.
Darfur's return to war would spell disaster for Sudan
At least 125 people were brutally killed this month, when Arab and Masalit tribesmen fought running street battles in the Sudanese city of El Geneina. Rocket-propelled grenades hit a hospital and UN compound, and families who were already forced to flee their homes because of past fighting were pushed out of camps.
What we got wrong about Covid and refugees
The health impacts of Covid-19 have not been its most lethal effects.
The remaking of Myanmar
Myanmar’s newly elected government has an opportunity to end the Rohingya crisis once and for all.
The little talked about side-effects of Covid-19
The economic impacts of the coronavirus are devastating communities in the world’s poorest places.
Attacks against humanitarian workers must stop
Unprecedented rates of attacks against aid workers, restrictions linked to Covid-19, and counter-terrorism laws are making delivering aid harder than ever.
Why Covid-19 must reshape global crisis funding
Covid-19 is the first global pandemic in a century. It has provided a real-time stress test that demonstrates how the international crisis system performs under extreme pressure. And it has exposed fundamental weaknesses in how disaster response is financed.
We need to reopen Yemen’s airports and sea routes to save lives
As people across the globe yearn to travel, the closure of airports is a matter of life and death for Yemeni people. We must apply political pressure and have them reopened, despite the pandemic.
The crippling cost of Covid-19 on refugees
We are witnessing a life-and-death struggle for displaced communities, as coronavirus restrictions take a stranglehold on millions of lives.
Military intervention alone will fail to solve the Sahel crisis
President Emmanuel Macron invited the five G5 West African leaders to the French city of Pau in January to shore up support for international engagement in restive Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger. All agreed that more European security support was needed to counter violent extremism in the Central Sahel.
Coronavirus will silently hit the world's displaced hardest
When Covid-19 hits refugee camps and communities affected by conflict, its impact will be swift and devastating.
A battle of values will determine the next decade of aid
The 2020s must not become the decade of indifference. We must better protect people fleeing war and disaster.
Myanmar’s Rohingya crisis is moving backwards. Here’s how to resolve it
Myanmar’s Rohingya crisis is sliding dangerously backwards. The denial of civil rights, a massive land grab and an upsurge in armed fighting undermine any real hope for change.
New Dutch terror bill must not target aid workers
A controversial counter-terrorism bill could end up criminalising aid workers in the Netherlands if they enter conflict hotspots when assisting the world's most vulnerable people.
US denial of Central America’s crisis will backfire
While the caravans no longer march north, the Central American crisis is deepening away from our television screens.
In Trump-Iran showdown, Afghan refugees are neglected but devastating collateral damage
As leaders in the United States and Iran continue their geopolitical showdown, millions of Afghan refugees, disaster victims and ordinary communities in Iran will be the first and hardest hit.
Africa’s next full-blown war can still be averted
Today Cameroon topped our list of the most neglected displacement crises in the world. But must the central African nation become embroiled in a full-scale war before the world responds?
Counter-terrorism and humanitarian action: the perils of zero tolerance
Countering terrorism is a foreign policy imperative for the United States and most major donors to humanitarian organizations. The onus tends to be on implementing agencies, whether from the U.N. system or individual nongovernmental organizations like mine, to fall in line. The pressure to adhere to governments’ agendas is immense.
Do not criminalise aid work
The counterterrorism bill that is currently being discussed in the UK Parliament could make it illegal for British aid workers to assist civilians in many conflict zones.
Three crises we cannot ignore in 2019
The international community must brace itself for deepening and largely neglected emergencies in 2019.
World powers must choose peaceful negotiations to avoid an unprecedented disaster in Idlib
The only way to ensure the safety of civilians in Idlib and stabilise the region is to prevent an offensive altogether.
25 years since the Oslo Accords: Israeli Security Depends on Palestinian Rights
Twenty-five years ago today I sat on the White House lawn to witness the landmark signing of the Oslo agreement between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization. Diplomats around me gasped as Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin shook hands with former foe, Chairman Yasser Arafat. But for some of us present, the handshake came as no surprise.
The world’s most deadly place to deliver aid
South Sudan surpassed Syria, Afghanistan and Yemen as the most dangerous country where we delivered aid in 2017. And this year could turn out just as deadly, argues NRC Secretary Genearal Jan Egeland.
Mosul still reeling from the Islamic State group rule
MOSUL, Iraq: A year after the Iraqi government declared “victory” in Mosul, following the recapturing of the country’s second largest city from the Islamic State group (ISIS), the city is in dire need of physical and psychological repair. For the residents trying to piece together the remains of their homes and communities, the current state of Mosul is a far cry from the city they once knew.
I predicted 2018 would offer hope for Syrians – but I was painfully wrong
There is no moral justification for levelling apartment blocks, hospitals or schools to the ground in the name of combatting terror. There must be accountability for disproportionate civilian casualties, even in the age of international terrorism.
Congo will be Africa’s mega-crisis in 2018
Mounting political instability and a massive humanitarian crisis are set to collide next year in DRC, creating a mega-crisis on the continent.
Will 2018 be the year of return to Syria?
Today, in government buildings across Europe and the Middle East, officials debate policies that would return millions of Syrian refugees to their war-ravaged land. Displaced families sit in refugee tents weighing up the risk of returning home, too; the burden weighing heavier on their shoulders.
Freeze Afghan deportations: the war is back and worsening
Forcing millions of Afghans back to a country in turmoil could destabilize the whole region.
How to give effectively (and why it is a good idea)
I found myself in the middle of the desert, standing in a white sea of shacks. Walls encircled the camp and sand swirled rhythmically outside, like a guard patrolling the perimeter. This was the Zaatari refugee camp— four kilometres of land housing 70,000 refugees.
How to strangle a nation
Forget the World Cup, Trump and Brexit. Yemen’s man-made starvation, silently taking hold in the midst of crossfire, will be the world’s biggest news story in 2018.
Fighting violent extremism – humanitarians beware
Communities in some of the most dangerous corners of the world will be left without lifesaving aid because of countering violent extremism agendas. Millions of people living in countries facing famine may be hardest hit.
Attacking the lifesavers
Today, Tuesday, the Norwegian public broadcaster NRK’s programme Brennpunkt airs an important documentary on aid workers under assault.
Congo’s wake up call
Goma, 25 October 2017 (IPS) – Late last week the humanitarian community activated a Level 3 emergency for the Democratic Republic of the Congo. This trigger in the global humanitarian system is seldom used, and only after serious deliberation by the top echelons of the UN system.
South Sudan: Seize this chance for peace
The United Kingdom and Norway must step up to help end South Sudan’s war before the window of opportunity slams shut, argues Jan Egeland.
Forcing displaced Nigerians may worsen crisis
Forcing displaced Nigerians to return home now is likely to worsen a fragile humanitarian crisis, argues Jan Egeland.
The UN's roulette game with Colombia
The United Nations has picked a dangerous time to pull aid resources out of Colombia. In doing so, it threatens to unravel the fragile peace the country has fought so hard for.
In the line of fire
We cannot tolerate our colleagues being targeted deliberately or harmed indiscriminately. The system must change
Nigeria's ticking time bomb
In the dusty arid town of Dikwa, tens of thousands of Nigerians queue for hours in sweltering 40-degree heat for water. Fatuma is one of 100,000 people displaced in the Borno State town, the epicentre of Nigeria’s conflict. She sifts through remnants of food aid seeds, drying them out to prepare them to eat. Food is a scarcity here. Fatuma used to live on three meals a day. Today she is happy if aid agencies can provide her with a single meal.
What we must learn from South Sudan
Today the United Nations shelters 200,000 people inside its bases across South Sudan. Never before in history have tens of thousands of people sought refuge for such a long period in UN compounds. Never before have aid workers been forced to work in close proximity with armed peacekeepers under such conditions. South Sudan has reset the rules of aid operations forever.
Escape from Aleppo, at last
This week’s evacuations send a positive signal of what can be achieved around the negotiation table.
The World Humanitarian Day Mockery
Aid workers' efforts are wasted without real political leadership to resolve conflicts and share global responsibility for hosting people fleeing conflict.
Peace as the mere absence of conflict is not enough
Colombia is on the verge of ending 50 years of armed conflict. Negotiators from the government and the main opposition armed group, the FARC, have approved a framework for the peace agreement, and the President of Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos, is pushing for the agreement to be signed by the end of August.