IOM: USD 45 Million Needed for 2018-2020 Migrant Response in Horn of Africa, Yemen

Ethiopian migrants in Obock, Djibouti, walk to a shaded area to await smugglers to bring them to Yemen. Photo: Olivia Headon/IOM 2018

Horn of Africa and Yemen migrant flows.

Nairobi – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, and its partners launched, on 6 August, a Regional Migrant Response Plan (RMRP) for the Horn of Africa and Yemen through which they are appealing to the international community for USD 45 million. The plan details support to migrants on the move in the Horn of Africa and Yemen from 2018 to 2020.

The response plan, developed in coordination with regional and country level non-governmental and intergovernmental partners, is a migrant-focused humanitarian and development strategy for vulnerable migrants from the Horn of Africa, specifically those from Somalia, Djibouti and Ethiopia, moving to and from Yemen. The plan targets some 81,000 people.

Irregular migration from the Horn of Africa to the Gulf countries has been steadily increasing over the past few years, with approximately 100,000 people entering Yemen, a major transit point on this route, in 2017. Often, migrants and refugees cross the Gulf of Aden from Djibouti or Somalia, arriving in Yemen with the support of smugglers.

The countries on this route are beset with humanitarian challenges. In Yemen, partners estimate that more than 20 million people need humanitarian assistance, while Somalia and Ethiopia are also in the grip of complex emergencies because of conflict and recurrent disasters. 

The plan estimates that, like in 2017, up to 100,000 new arrivals from the Horn of Africa will reach Yemen in 2018, while 200,000 migrants and refugees will return from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Yemen to the Horn of Africa countries in the same period. Of these, 150,000 and 50,000 will return to Ethiopia and Somalia, respectively.

“This Regional Migrant Response Plan will guide IOM and its partners in addressing the growing needs of irregular migrants moving between the Horn of Africa and Yemen,” said Jeffrey Labovitz, IOM Regional Director for the East and Horn of Africa. “The humanitarian needs in the region remain immense, which leave migrants and host communities in a vulnerable situation,” he added.

The three-year plan includes urgent humanitarian interventions. It also details longer term actions to address the drivers of migration, build local migration management capacity and provide sustainable socioeconomic infrastructure to support communities of origin, transit and destination. The objectives of the plan are in keeping with the Sustainable Development Goals, connecting humanitarian and development field work.

Download the Regional Migrant Response Plan for the Horn of Africa and Yemen; 2018 - 2020

For more information, please contact IOM’s Regional Office in Nairobi:

Salvatore Sortino (programmatic enquiries) Tel: +254 20 4221 171 or +254 700 638 444, Email:
Kenneth Odiwuor (media enquiries), Tel: +254 722 560363, Email: