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G7 Famine Prevention and Humanitarian Crises Compact

G7 Foreign and Development Ministers' Meeting, London, May 5, 2021

I. Introduction

1: The world faces an unprecedented humanitarian crisis resulting from the triple threat of conflict, climate change and Covid-19. Caseloads are growing, with 237 million people requiring humanitarian assistance this year. So is severity, with the UN reporting over 34 million people now in IPC 4 one step from catastrophe or famine. Yemen, South Sudan and north-east Nigeria are at immediate risk of famine, and Tigray in Ethiopia, Afghanistan, Burkina Faso and the Central Sahel, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Haiti, Sudan and Syria are also of particular concern. For these tens of millions of people, who rely on aid or have been forced from their homes, with their children on the verge of starvation, a bout of diarrhoea or measles is enough to kill.

2: This is not only about money. It is also about diplomatic action, smarter financing and more effective responses to crises. We commit to act now to: address critical funding gaps; promote humanitarian access; respect for International Humanitarian Law and protection of civilians; scale-up anticipatory action; partner with the World Bank Group to enhance crisis preparedness and response; and strengthen our data and analysis to facilitate early action.

3: Through commitments in these five areas, we will lead international efforts to prevent famine and begin to stem the growth of humanitarian need, working closely with the UN High-Level Task Force on Preventing Famine. We will help ensure people have access to food, clean water and sanitation, that their children have access to lifesaving malnutrition treatment and vaccinations and that all civilians, including women and girls, are protected from violence. We will progress the G7 Broad Approach to Food Security and Nutrition, adopted in Elmau, Germany in 2015; support the Italian Presidency's G20 food security efforts; back an ambitious IDA20 replenishment; and further our collaboration through the UN Food Systems Summit, COP 26 and the Tokyo Nutrition for Growth Summit. We will ensure the continuous monitoring of our commitments.

II. Address critical funding gaps

4: Of the more than a quarter of a million people who died in the 2011 famine in Somalia, half died before famine was even declared. More funding is needed, now.

5: We, the G7, therefore, commit to:

6: We provided almost 80 per cent of the humanitarian funding received by these 42 countries in 2020. We call on partners beyond the G7 to significantly increase their humanitarian assistance to these crises, and call on the private sector and foundations to increase their contributions.

7: Governments have the primary responsibility to address the needs of their own populations. We will continue to support governments to discharge this responsibility by helping them to grow their fiscal space, to access climate adaptation finance, support rapid Covid-19 vaccine roll-out and address the root causes of conflict. More coherent and better coordinated support to humanitarian, development and peace programmes in conflict situations, in line with the OECD DAC Recommendation on the Nexus, can also help prevent crises, reduce need and strengthen the resilience of the most vulnerable to future crises.

III. Promote humanitarian access, respect for international humanitarian law and protection of civilians

8: Humanitarian access must be guaranteed, International Humanitarian Law (IHL) respected, civilians (including medical and humanitarian workers), schools, hospitals and water infrastructure protected and the disproportionate impact of conflict on women, girls and marginalised groups addressed. Many of those obstructing humanitarian access and committing violations of IHL are not being held to account. Impunity will not be tolerated.

9: We, therefore, commit to:

IV. Scale-up anticipatory action

10: There is compelling evidence that anticipating shocks and releasing pre-agreed funds in advance for activities to mitigate their impact, such as protecting assets including livestock, rehabilitating water sources or vaccinating children before a drought, is more efficient, more dignified and protects hard-won development gains.

11: We, therefore, commit to:

V. Partner with the World Bank Group

12: To begin to stem the growth in humanitarian need, we must strengthen countries' own crisis preparedness and response, particularly those in conflict. The World Bank is well positioned to do this through IDA19 and 20, drawing on its strategy for Fragility, Conflict and Violence (FCV), in coordination with the UN, humanitarian donors, other multilateral and regional development banks and peace and security actors at the country level.

13: As leading shareholders and donors, we will work with the World Bank Group to:

VI. Strengthen our data and analysis

14: The Integrated Phase Classification (IPC) remains the gold standard for food security data and analysis. We must ensure its integrity and complement it with data and analysis that offers longer-range projections, is real-time, covers all sectors, includes mortality and captures the needs of women and girls. But we will not let lack of data be a barrier to timely action to save lives.

15: We, therefore, commit to:

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  1. Under the Commitments, the G7 will, as appropriate: seek commitments from partners to enhance respect for International Humanitarian Law (IHL); continue to help increase the capacity of state and, when relevant, non-state partners to implement IHL by assisting them to incorporate IHL into their doctrine, education, field training, operational decision-making processes and rules of engagement; and assist partners in ensuring that their disciplinary and/or judicial structures are capable of effectively addressing their own IHL violations should they occur and holding persons accountable for IHL violations in accordance with applicable requirements of international law.

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Source: Gov.UK

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