The Effects of the War in Ukraine on Somalia – The Organization for World Peace

As the war in Ukraine escalates, the repercussions may be felt in countries not involved. Somalia, a country that has suffered from war, droughts, famine and other problems like this, is an example of a country negatively affected by the war in Ukraine. Further adding to the severity of the drought, “53% of the food received in Somalia last year (from donations) came from Ukraine”. Now, because of the war, shipping ports in Ukraine are closed, and Ukraine, even if it wanted to, is unable to donate food. Coinciding with the war, Somalia faced its worst drought in almost 40 years, and people suffered enormously; partly because of the attention that the international community has had to give to the Ukrainian question.

Somalia has “long been a recipient of funding from the international community and organizations such as the United Nations or the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNCHA)”, and much of its economy depends on this aid. The problem is that when other crises arise in the world, international bodies become dispersed and sometimes focus on one issue rather than another. To illustrate the impact of the war in Ukraine on the situation in Somalia, UNCHA “only 3.2% ($47.1 million) of the required funding ($1.5 billion) for its humanitarian response plan has been received so far”. This need for funding is extremely justified as the “United Nations (UN) projects that 4.6 million Somalis will not have enough food by May 2022”, which could lead to widespread famine, diseases related to starvation and possibly death. Obviously, funding for Somalia has been an indirect casualty of this war as the support they need from the international community has been extremely delayed by this war. The Ukrainian issue requires massive attention from the international community, and rightly so, but at the expense of the Somali people.

It is difficult to criticize the international community’s response to Somalia because the Ukrainian issue deserves massive attention, but there are countless humanitarian crises outside of Ukraine that cannot be ignored. The ongoing drought and famine are predicted to get worse and will continue to get worse until the funds they need are raised. So, the main criticism that the international community faces for this issue is the lack of attention given to the issue, not in a purely monetary sense, but also the lack of attention given to the Somali people. The lack of funding for Somalia is a result of the focus on Ukraine, but the international community as a whole may be unaware of just how dire the situation really is for the people of Somalia. Yes, Ukraine, its citizens, immigrants and the war itself must require massive attention to ensure that those at risk are protected as much as possible against the tyranny of the Russians; it’s undeniable.

However, the international community is failing the people of Somalia for lack of funding because they have made a commitment to Somalia saying that they will provide them with $1.5 billion in funding. This is because they recognize Somalia as a state victim of chronic underdevelopment and a past humanitarian crisis. They would not have made these commitments to Somalia if they had not recognized or believed that there would be a need for support to ensure that the people do not suffer unfairly because of the bad economy. Now that there is another major crisis in the world, it seems that commitment to Somalis has been sidelined, which is not right. Leaving aside the UN and its organs, the war in Ukraine has not allowed Ukraine to continue sending food to Somalia as it did in the past, which means that its food imports have fallen sharply. . Thus, food in the country is extremely scarce or expensive to the point where the common person may be deprived of price.

One of the main problems in criticizing this issue in Somalia and finding a solution is that the solution and the problem are strongly linked to the conflict in Ukraine. As the world continues to globalize, a situation in one state will impact the condition of another state, as what is happening in Somalia shows. Somalia has nothing to do with the war in Ukraine, yet their condition has deteriorated because of it. As the conflict in Ukraine has come at a time when the world is aware of its interconnectedness, the United Nations or other NGOs or IGOs ​​should have ways of continuing to function if something like the war in Ukraine occurs. There should be a way to continue to protect other people, like Somalis, at a time when two countries are at war with each other and require major attention and commitment from the international community. .

Now the main question is: what can be done differently to ensure that the people of Somalia receive the funding and attention they deserve during this humanitarian issue? As has been identified, the current cause of the lack of funding and attention is partly due to the conflict in Ukraine. The solution is not to leave Ukraine and its people to fend for themselves to protect Somalis, because that will come at the expense of Ukrainians. One solution is for the UN and international organizations to use the large number of departments to divide attention and resources. The UN has a variety of divisions within its governance structure that are tasked with specific missions, so why can’t they create one that focuses strictly on humanitarian support? This division can deal with humanitarian crises outside of war, like what is happening in Somalia, and the advantage of being its separate department is that you can give it its budget, powers, etc., to reduce the risk of outside factors interfering with helping people in need. The structure of the UN allows for division to ensure that its promise, to protect the peoples of the world, is kept.

The world is no longer in an era where incidents are isolated from each other, so organizations tasked with protecting people cannot assume that outside factors like war will not have ripple effects. . However, to help the people of Somalia at this time, the solution is simple: divert funds to help them get through this period of drought and prevent the situation from getting worse. Continue to support Ukraine, but don’t forget its other obligations to the world and to the people who are struggling. The goal of the international community is to protect people and their rights, while ensuring that they are not subjected to sub-human conditions such as drought, famine and things of that nature.

So while the Ukraine issue needs constant attention and support, as it should, there are people like the Somalis who should not suffer as a by-product of a war with which they are not. have no connection. Although this war was an unforeseen circumstance that the UN could not have foreseen when it made its commitments to Somalia, it does not exempt them from this commitment; especially when faced with such terrible conditions. They made that $1.5 billion commitment to the people, so now it’s up to them to keep it, because if they don’t, people might die. As expected, nearly 4.3 million people will be affected by the drought as of May.

The overriding problem is not simply the war in Ukraine, but rather the lack of preparation and the inability to function when a conflict such as this arises. As mentioned, the world is aware of its globalization, which means that its organizations cannot continue to operate assuming that all situations, conflicts or humanitarian disasters that will occur will be isolated incidents with little impact outside. of State. . They must evolve to create a system that can manage the interconnectedness of the world to ensure that people who need help, like those in Somalia, do not suffer because of a conflict that has no place elsewhere.

Aubrey L. Morgan