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The 15 main humanitarian crises that will mark 2023

The war in Ukraine and the consequences that it has brought with it have caused a new record of people in need of humanitarian aid in the world by 2023, with a total of 339 million in this situation in 69 countries, 65 million more than in 2022 .

The increase in needs, due to the persistence of conflicts such as those in Syria or Yemen and the worsening of others such as the one in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), means that the funds to deal with them also increase. Thus, the UN has requested 51,500 million dollars for this year, 25% more than a year ago.

Below, we review in alphabetical order the humanitarian crises to which special attention must be paid:


The year begins with the uncertainty of how the decision of the Taliban to prohibit women from working for humanitarian organizations will affect, given that these represent a high percentage of workers and are in charge of caring for women and children, always among the most vulnerable.

After the Taliban came to power, the number of people in need of help has increased, reaching 28.3 million — in 2021 there were 18.4 million. Despite the fact that the level of violence has decreased, although there are frequent attacks by the Islamic State, the severe drought has had a strong impact on the population, which is also facing a serious economic crisis.


The country is going through an unprecedented crisis at the political, human rights and humanitarian level. The 2021 military coup has escalated conflicts with some ethnic armed groups, causing an increase in displacement. There are currently 1.4 million displaced people, one million more than a year ago, and 17.6 million people in need of help.

On the other hand, the Rohingya refugee crisis in neighboring Bangladesh remains unresolved. Almost a million people from this persecuted minority in Burma live in appalling conditions in the Cox’s Bazar refugee camps. In recent weeks, arrivals by sea have intensified after dangerous journeys by Rohingyas to the Indonesian coast.


The conjunction of a severe drought with the impact of the conflict in Tigray (north) and violence in other areas of the country and the consequent displacement has left 28.6 million people in need of assistance.

The peace agreement reached between the Ethiopian government and the Tigray Popular Liberation Front (TPLF) has allowed the situation in this region to be alleviated to some extent, but now there is fear of the outbreak of a new conflict in the Oromia region, the more populated. The UN does not expect the situation to improve in 2023, also due to poor rain forecasts.


The Caribbean country is facing a cocktail of political, economic and humanitarian crisis, to which in recent months has been added the insecurity caused by the activity of armed gangs, as well as a new outbreak of cholera. As a result, 5.2 million of the country’s 11.7 million people require assistance.

The price of the basic basket has risen 63% in one year and it is estimated that half the population is hungry, with some 1.8 million in particularly serious circumstances and some areas where famine could be occurring. Should the deployment of international forces requested by the Government take place, OCHA believes that the situation could be improved, although it admits the difficulty of making forecasts in a country where crises occur.


A total of 11 million people need assistance in this crisis that has as its epicenter the northeast of Nigeria and that also affects areas of Cameroon, Chad and Niger bathed by the lake. The violence mainly carried out by the Islamic State in West Africa (ISWA) and the remnants of Boko Haram has not subsided but seems to be spreading to other areas, especially Nigeria, previously immune.

According to the UN, there are 5.6 million people severely food insecure, including 300,000 severely malnourished children, and 2.9 million internally displaced people, 2 million of them in Nigeria, in addition to 624,000 refugees.


The unprecedented economic and financial crisis, with a historic depreciation of the Lebanese pound, has brought with it an increase in humanitarian needs that has been reflected in the request for 600 million dollars, 59% more than in 2022. To this the persistent political instability is added, with the lack of a president since November.

According to the WFP, the basic basket costs 1,700% more than in October 2019 and the average salary only covers 24% of basic food needs, compared to 93% in 2021. In this context, there are 2.3 million people who need help, between Lebanese and Palestinian and Syrian refugees.


The UN has done its mayor request funds for the country to date, with 2.3 billion dollars, 20% more than in 2022, which demonstrates the increase in needs due to the deterioration of the situation, mainly in the east, where the violence of two groups groups — the M23 and the ADF, which act as an affiliate of the Islamic State — has been exacerbated.

One in four Congolese face food insecurity — 26.4 million people — and there are 6.4 million with acute malnutrition, mainly children under 5 years of age, despite the country’s great agricultural potential. Of the 109 million inhabitants, 60 live in extreme poverty. Added to this are 5.7 million internally displaced persons, the highest number in Africa.


The situation in the central Sahel has been deteriorating as the jihadist threat has spread from northern Mali to the south, affecting neighboring Burkina Faso and western Niger and threatening the Gulf of Guinea countries.

At present, 14.4 million people require assistance in these three countries, with Burkina Faso as the most affected since one in four inhabitants require assistance. In the region there are already 2.3 million internally displaced persons, 1.7 million of whom are in this country, and 4.4 million in a situation of food insecurity.

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