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South Sudan Livestock Crisis - August 2015
The livestock crisis continues to deepen and spread in South Sudan. Last December, FAO warned of a “silent emergency” as the ongoing conflict and instability undermined the livelihoods of the country’s agropastoral communities. Today, continued massive displacement and recurrent insecurity, disrupted markets, reduced trade, soaring food prices and a widespread economic downturn have been detrimental for livestock owners.
Intensive and abnormal migrations due to insecurity have seriously depleted the health conditions for animal health throughout the country. It will take years for these communities – representing an estimated 65 percent of South Sudan’s population – to rebuild and strengthen their herds. By December 2014, when FAO first issued a Livestock Alert for South Sudan, the dynamics for the deteriorating livestock situation had already been set into motion. The conflict divided the country into affected and less affected areas, the majority of livestock were in the hardest hit areas and their movement into more peaceful locations turned the situation into a nation-wide emergency.
In 2015, Greater Equatoria and Greater Bahr el Ghazal regions have faced rising pressures and heightened tensions, with disease outbreaks, cattle raids and tribal conflicts reaching alarming rates.