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Foreign Affairs | UN Security Council response to human rights violations

To ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs the extent to which Ireland and the United Nations is continuously alert to the various locations worldwide that remain sensitive to hunger, starvation and human rights abuses with the view to rapid response; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

Ireland works with the UN to monitor global crises continuously.  At the beginning of each year, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) sets out the needs in the Global Humanitarian Overview (GHO). During the course of the year, OCHA compiles monthly updates to reflect the changing number and nature of crises, including the number of people in need of humanitarian assistance. 

In addition, there are a number of mechanisms to monitor the levels of food insecurity, particularly in conflict-affected contexts. The World Food Programme and the Food and Agricultural Organisation publish a bi-annual ‘Hotspot Report’ that identifies the key hunger hotspots and important trends in food insecurity.  As the UN Security Council informal co-lead on conflict and hunger, Ireland has brought this report to the UN Security Council for discussion and urgent action.

UN Security Council Resolution 2417 provides the mandate for OCHA to report to the Council on instances of conflict-induced famine. The most recent such report, in August, detailed instances of conflict-induced famine in Northern Ethiopia, Yemen, South Sudan and North-East Nigeria. Ireland, together with Brazil, led a UN Security Council meeting to discuss the report and advocate for swift action.

Ireland has as strong track-record as a principled humanitarian donor and our assistance is provided based on the level of need and need alone. The GHO informs Ireland’s allocation decisions at the beginning of the year. While we respond to large-scale humanitarian crises such as Ukraine and Syria, less visible crises such as Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) remain front and centre in our response.

During the course of the year, Ireland allocates additional funding for sudden onset crises and for rapidly deteriorating humanitarian crises. Decisions are informed by the GHO monthly updates and the updates on conflict and hunger referred to above. We also receive information and briefings from our partners on the ground. This year, Ireland has provided additional humanitarian funding in response to the crises in Ukraine, the Horn of Africa and the floods in Pakistan. Most recently, the Government provided an additional €30 million to support urgent efforts to prevent famine in the Horn of Africa this year. 

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