“Over a quarter-billion people are predicted to be in need in 2022, topping what was already a decades-long peak this year,” said USAID Administrator Samantha Power.
“A stubborn, evolving pandemic that continues to take lives, batter economies, and drive more people into humanitarian crisis. More than one percent of the world’s people displaced. Food insecurity at unprecedented levels. Longer-lasting conflicts, more frequent complex emergencies, and climate change looming over it all, exacerbating losses and undoing gains.”
Speaking at the virtual United Nations Global Humanitarian Overview for 2022, Administrator Power noted that due to the fact that “the major source of humanitarian need in the world today is not from pandemics or natural disasters—it is from conflict,” there is a need for a shift in approach that would go beyond the need for more resources.
“Take Yemen, Syria, Somalia, South Sudan—these protracted battles in these countries haunt these countries’ people and threaten stability far beyond their borders. This last year we’ve also witnessed coups in Burma, the fall of Afghanistan to the Taliban, a military takeover in Sudan, and a spiraling human catastrophe in Ethiopia.
In many of these cases, the governments in these fragile or conflict-affected states are simply failing to meet the needs of their people, choosing violence over relinquishing or sharing power or respecting rights and pluralism."
This means that “While those conflicts persist the burden of dealing with their fallout currently falls unfairly and almost exclusively to humanitarian organizations,” said Administrator Power.
The answer is political, she said. “And it is why it is so important that the United States and other countries practice what President Biden calls relentless diplomacy.”
“Whenever a conflict develops or a climate shock puts people in harm's way, America will be there and will mobilize support. But in a changing world with these galloping, growing needs, we can’t keep making the same efforts, issuing the same pleas, and just writing bigger and bigger checks and expect different results.”
“We have to bring the weight of global diplomacy to bear to end these conflicts,” said Administrator Power. “We need to find a way to use diplomatic negotiation regionally, at the UN level, and in terms of our bilateral relations and coming together as allies to try to bring the parties together to bring conflicts to an end.”