Statement of Germany at the High Level Pledging Conference on the Horn of Africa, 24 May 2023

Horn of Africa Conference, 24 May 2023

At the UN OCHA Pledging Conference for humanitarian needs in the Horn of Africa region, Germany has pledged additional 210 million euros (ca 225 million USD) to help., © German Mission to UN / UN OCHA

24.05.2023 - Speech

Statement delivered by Ambassador Antje Leendertse

Alarmingly for us all, humanitarian needs across Africa are on the rise. The outbreak of hostilities in Sudan earlier this month has led to an additional urgent funding requirement of 1.4 billion USD to meet the basic needs of those affected by the conflict.

Despite these worrying developments, there are also some successes:

Against all odds and with our joint determination and substantial financial commitments, we were able to prevent the worst in the Horn of Africa. We averted famine in Somalia.

This is testimony that tailored, coordinated and anticipatory humanitarian assistance and resilience-building can deliver swift relief to the most vulnerable populations.

But we must not relent. And today’s Conference is yet another opportunity for all of us to show that we won’t.

We face many common challenges: Inflation, tighter public budgets, difficulties in explaining the need for humanitarian assistance at home.

We believe this only underlines the following three key priorities:

We need to spend our assistance budgets in a more targeted way: Coordination, localization and thinking long-term through the HDP-nexus are indispensable.

We need to keep up our commitments and at the same time enhance our work to broaden the donor base, bring in new actors, and demonstrate to them the merits of humanitarian assistance and resilience-building.

To ensure efficacy, we need to strengthen our humanitarian diplomacy. Security concerns, shrinking humanitarian spaces and a lack of much-needed access are often the main obstacle to reaching people in dire need. The ongoing violent conflict in Sudan is a vivid example of why a reliable ceasefire and secured humanitarian corridors as well as the respect of international humanitarian law are of utmost importance to deliver aid effectively.

We need to address these concerns together in order to overcome existing obstacles.

To alleviate the suffering in the Horn of Africa, Germany pledges a total of 210 million euros in humanitarian assistance for 2023 and 2024 in Ethiopia, Somalia and Kenya. This amount does not include additional substantial German funding in the areas of development aid and stabilization.

We encourage other states, organizations, and private sector actors to join us in responding generously to the humanitarian challenges in the Horn of Africa.

This is the only way to defeat the odds again – to prevent famine and to reach those in need.

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