IOM Sudan plans to adopt an integrated approach to Sudan’s migration and crisis response challenges and support the Government of Sudan in both demonstrating the principles and achieving the objectives of good migration governance including managing mobility dimensions of crises.
The Republic of Sudan is transitioning to democracy, with the formation of the joint civilian and military government in September 2019 and the signing of a peace agreement between the government and a number of armed groups on 3 October 2020. However, even with the positive changes experienced in 2019-2020, Sudan continues to experience one of the world’s most protracted humanitarian crises. It is expected that Sudan will continue to face several complex and overlapping challenges in 2021 due to the fragility of the political transition and peace process, socio-economic instability, natural disasters, multiple health crises and inter and intra-tribal conflict and violence over limited resources in parts of the country which have created new or secondary displacements and made it challenging for returnees to return to their places of origin in a secure or long-term sustainable manner. Sudan is also a long-term host to refugees from Eritrea, South Sudan and now with a new influx from Ethiopia (Tigray crisis, November 2020) which stretches the resources of host communities.
The economic crisis consistent with increased unemployment, high inflation and prices for basic goods, and shortages of essential commodities has limited people's purchasing power, with a significant portion of the population unable to cater for their basic household needs, which has led to sporadic protests in the country. Due to long-term internal conflict, economic instability, limited investment in infrastructure, and lack of access to basic services, approximately 9.3 million people are in need of assistance including 1.8 million internally displaced people (IDPs), 0.3 million returnees, 1.1 million refugees, and 6.1 million crisis-affected or vulnerable residents – with the majority (58%) of people in need being children (Sudan Humanitarian Needs Overview, 2020).
In addition, in 2020 Sudan experienced the worst floods in 30 years with over 875,000 people affected and 10 million people at risk of contracting water-borne diseases and 4.5 million people at-risk of vector-borne diseases (OCHA Situation Report – 8 October 2020). From March 2020, Sudan was also affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, which further impacted an underdeveloped health sector and the socio-economic well-being of the population in the country. As of 10 March 2021, 30,686 people are confirmed to have tested positive for COVID-19 in Sudan, resulting in 1,915 fatalities. Sudan is anticipating a second wave of infections with the number of cases increasing (OCHA Situation Report – 9 November 2020).