Protracted complex emergencies and natural disasters, including drought, earthquakes, floods, and wildfires, present significant challenges to vulnerable populations in Europe, the Middle East, and Central Asia (EMCA). Between FY 2006 and FY 2015, USAID’s Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA) and USAID’s Office of Food for Peace (USAID/FFP) provided assistance in response to a range of disasters, including floods, wildfires, winter emergencies, and complex crises.
Natural hazards, such as earthquakes, droughts, floods, wildfires, and extreme winter weather, affect a range of countries in Europe, the Middle East, and Central Asia (EMCA). In addition, rapid urban growth and environmental degradation in some countries have led to overcrowding and settlement in hazard-prone areas. Protracted conflict and limited government disaster management capacity in many EMCA countries compound the risks associated with natural disasters.
By Amina Nazarli
The increasing number of landslides in different parts of Baku and the Absheron Peninsula this October has raised fears among the population.
Construction work on the slopes of Baku and the Absheron Peninsula, the use of a watering yard, the outpouring of groundwater on the surface, and other factors are the cause of these landslides, which have been a problem in the past as well, Alemdar Piriyev, senior geologist at the Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences told the local media.
VIENNA, 12 November 2015 - In response to questions received by the Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group about the report and draft resolution currently under discussion in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), we take note of the attention paid by PACE to a Nagorno-Karabakh settlement. We share concerns, expressed in the resolution, regarding an increase of tensions along the border of Armenia and Azerbaijan and along the Line of Contact. We deeply regret the loss of lives, including civilians.
The Azerbaijan National Agency for Mine Action (ANAMA) defused 3,657,657 square meters of the country’s territory in October, ANAMA reported.
ANAMA detected and defused 83 unexploded ordnances (UXOs) in October.
Some 488 sappers, 112 assistants, six mechanical mine clearing machines and 36 mine-detection dogs are involved in mine clearing operations.
As much as 309,423,464 square metres of land have been cleared of mines so far and the number of defused landmines and UXOs amounted to 713,777.
October 2015 – Trends
Central African Republic, Israel/Palestine, Macedonia, Republic of Congo, South China Sea, Turkey
November 2015 – Watchlist
- Conflict risk alerts
- Conflict resolution opportunities
Seventieth Session, 19th, 20th & 21st Meetings (AM, PM & Night)
As the Palestinian flag was raised outside United Nations Headquarters in New York for the first time, President Mahmoud Abbas appealed to the General Assembly for support to see an independent State of Palestine take its rightful place among the community of nations.
September 2015 – Trends
Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Central African Republic, Mozambique, Somalia, Syria, Tajikistan, Turkey, Yemen
Colombia, Guatemala, Macedonia
October 2015 – Watchlist
Conflict risk alerts
Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, Central African Republic
Conflict resolution opportunities
16e, 17e & 18e séances plénières , matin, après-midi & soir
COUVERTURE DES RÉUNIONS
16th, 17th & 18th Meetings (AM, PM & Night)
The United Nations, notwithstanding its inadequacies and failures, was an indispensable “family of nations” that had nurtured countries in search of equality, peace and prosperity, the General Assembly heard today as it continued its annual debate.
New York, 26 September 2015 - The Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group (Ambassadors Igor Popov of the Russian Federation, James Warlick of the United States of America, and Pierre Andrieu of France), together with the Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairman-in-Office Ambassador Andrzej Kasprzyk, held a meeting on 24 September with the Foreign Minister of Armenia Edward Nalbandian, and a separate meeting on 25 September with the Foreign Minister of Azerbaijan Elmar Mammadyarov.
NEW YORK, 25 September 2015 – The OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs (Ambassadors Igor Popov of the Russian Federation, James Warlick of the United States of America, and Pierre Andrieu of France), together with the Personal Representative of the OSCE Chairman-in-Office Ambassador Andrzej Kasprzyk, express their serious concerns about Armenian and Azerbaijani forces using mortars and heavy weapons in and around civilian areas.
Yerevan, Armenia | AFP | Thursday 9/24/2015 - 18:43 GMT
Azerbaijani forces on Thursday shelled Armenia, killing three civilian women, officials in Yerevan said, as tensions mounted in the Caucasus neighbours' decades-long conflict over the disputed Nagorny Karabakh region.
Three women aged up to 94 "died as a result of shelling by Azerbaijani armed forces" in Armenia's north-eastern Tavush region close to the border with Azerbaijan, Armenia's interior ministry spokesman Ashot Agaronyan told AFP.
The Fourth Regional Technical Group meeting on Disaster Management under the Heart of Asia regional cooperation initiative took place today, and resulted in the development of a Confidence-Building Measure (CBM) Road Map for Heart of Asia Countries. The meeting was attended by representatives from all 14 participating countries and six supporting countries. The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) was a technical partner for the meeting, and Mr Sartaj Aziz, the adviser to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs and National Security, was in attendance as chief guest.
The Fourth Regional Technical Group meeting under the Heart of Asia initiative took place in Islamabad today. The meeting’s focus was on confidence building measures (CBMs) for disaster management, which is led by Pakistan and Kazakhstan. This year focuses on the establishment of CBM’s road map of the Heart of Asia Countries.
Azerbaijan - Earthquake
• An earthquake of magnitude 5.4M and depth 15km occurred in northern Azerbaijan on 4 September at 4.49 UTC. The epicentre was located approx. 10 km south of Oghuz (pop. 7 000). Several aftershocks have been reported.
• According to media the earthquake was felt in some areas of northern and central Azerbaijan, causing panic. As of 4 September morning, there were no reports of damage or casualties.
• Sources: ECHO, GDACS, EMSC, USGS, Republican Seismic Survey CenterAzerbaijan,
August 2015 – Trends
- Deteriorated situations
Afghanistan, Burundi, Central African Republic, Colombia/Venezuela, Guatemala, Kashmir, Lebanon, Nepal, Yemen
- Improved situations
Guinea, South Sudan, Sri Lanka
September 2015 – Watchlist
- Conflict risk alerts
Colombia/Venezuela, Guatemala, Iraq, Nepal, Yemen
Conflict resolution opportunities
Despite win in Europe’s human rights courts, political stalemate is likely to draw out the process of paying reparations to families displaced by war.
The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) issued a landmark ruling in June in favour of displaced people on both sides of the NagornyKarabakh conflict. But officials in both Yerevan and Baku have yet to explain how they plan to compensate claimants forced by conflict to abandon their homes and property.