NAIROBI (AlertNet) - Some 13 million people in Horn of Africa went hungry last year after severe drought hit the region.
Following is a timeline on the crisis taken from a report by Oxfam and Save the Children.
* First official confirmation of La Nina effect in the Horn which causes drier than normal conditions
* Acute malnutrition rate of 16 percent in southern Somalia, above the 15 percent emergency threshold which should trigger humanitarian response
OCTOBER - DECEMBER
* ‘Short rains' fail
*United Nations Consolidated Appeal for Somalia has relatively low figures for those in need of assistance in 2011 and fails to sufficiently reflect the La Nina predictions
* Inter-agency Food Security and Nutrition Working Group for East Africa says pre-emptive action needed to protect livelihoods and avoid later costly emergency interventions
* People on the ground try to set alarm bells ringing. They aren't always able to get people to respond further up the line
* Acute malnutrition rate of 25 percent in southern Somalia
* A Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWSNET) food security alert says average rains will likely lead to a critical situation and predict “localised famine conditions (in southern Somalia) including significantly increased child mortality… if worst case scenario assumptions are realised”.
* Second rainy season fails, resulting in crop failure and animal deaths. Crisis reaches "a tipping point”
* Declaration of famine in Somalia. Activity scales up
* Acute malnutrition rate of 36 percent in southern Somalia