A. Situation analysis
Description of the emergency
Since June 2014 Belarus has seen increasing numbers of people fleeing the areas of conflict in Ukraine. At 16 October, the authorities reported that the number of asylum applications reached 511, while some 30,000 Ukrainian citizens are reportedly seeking other forms of legal stay in Belarus.
The Department on Citizenship and Migration of the Ministry of Interior of Belarus reports over 49,000 citizens of Ukraine registered in Belarus over nine months of 2014.
This is a summary of what was said by the UNHCR spokesperson at today’s Palais des Nations press briefing in Geneva.
With the crisis in Ukraine entering its first winter, UNHCR is racing to help some of the most vulnerable displaced people cope with expected harsh winter conditions.
As of 16 October, 417,246 IDPs have been identified by Ukraine’s State Emergency Service. 95% come from the eastern regions of Ukraine.
Ukrainian Parliament adopted law on protection of internally displaced persons in addition to resolutions on IDP registration and provision of financial assistance, introduced by Cabinet of Ministers.
As of 18 September, almost 275,500 Ukrainians have been displaced throughout Ukraine. Almost 94% of them come from the eastern regions of Ukraine.
Within the reporting period, UNHCR distributed humanitarian aid worth more than 200,000 USD to the most vulnerable IDPs. Deliveries included assistance to rebuild destroyed homes.
More than 250,000 USD was provided in form of cash assistance to about 1,500 vulnerable IDPs in Kyiv, Lviv and Vinnytsia region.
Almost 260,000 persons are displaced throughout Ukraine as of 1 September. 94% come from eastern Ukraine.
At least 143,000 have fled in the past three weeks due to the intensified fighting in eastern regions.
The number of Ukrainians applying for international protection reached 121,190 in the Russian Federation and 4,106 across the EU.
The fight for control of Libya between the Misrata-led Islamist-leaning coalition and the Zintan-led forces is escalating by the day. Hundreds have been killed and thousands displaced in over six weeks of clashes and heavy artillery fire. The Misrata side emerged victorious in the battle over Tripoli’s international airport, taking control of the capital, and made advances around Benghazi, but the larger political divide remains unresolved.
As of 20 August, the number of IDPs is estimated to have reached 190,000.
IDPs from eastern Ukraine now make up 92% of the total number of displaced.
UNHCR is concerned by the attack on a convoy of people attempting to leave Luhansk region of eastern Ukraine.
UNHCR is concerned by the increasing number of casualties, OHCHR estimates that as of 13 August the death toll has increased to 2,119.
Increasing Israeli-Palestinian tensions culminated in Israel launching "Operation Protective Edge" in Gaza in early July (see our latest report and commentary). The assault, which started as an aerial campaign and was later extended to include ground operations, reportedly killed more than 1,400 Palestinians throughout the month while 64 Israelis were killed in clashes inside the Gaza Strip and by Hamas rocket fire. Several attempts at reaching a ceasefire agreement failed in July.
FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT
Prospects for 2014 cereal production are favourable
Cereal imports decreased in 2013/14 marketing year (July/June)
Prices of wheat products stable in past months but well above their year earlier levels
Description of the operation
After a relatively mild start, a surprisingly sudden onset of an extremely harsh winter caught many Belarusians completely unprepared, especially homeless people, drivers on the roads and city dwellers who needed to travel long distances by public transport or on foot.
HIGHLIGHTS - The number of internally displaced persons (IDPs) reached over 79,000 across Ukraine.
The Ukrainian authorities nominated Mr Volodymyr Groysman, Deputy Prime Minister as the coordinator on all IDP matters.
During the last coordination meeting on IDP matters, the authorities decided on the establishment of a registration system and on the drafting of new legislation on IDPs in line with international standards.
Further degradation of law and order and localised military operations in the east of Ukraine,
Donbas region, since March has caused a deterioration in the situation. UNHCR is aware of more than 59,600* internally displaced persons (IDPs) from Crimea and Donbas, as of 1 July; with additional unconfirmed reports of several thousand IDPs still within the eastern region itself.
Most IDPs from the eastern region have reported leaving with limited belongings, and are in need of shelter, food and nonfood items such as clothing. In the eastern region primary health care services have been jeopardized, with shortages reported in emergency medical services, essential medications and medical supplies. Water and energy supplies are heavily distorted in Sloviansk, Kramatorsk and neighboring areas. Cash shortages in some areas of the east are reducing purchasing power and affecting commercial supplies.
Further degradation of law and order and localised military operations in the east of Ukraine, Donbas region, since March has caused a deterioration in the situation. UNHCR is aware of more than 46,100 * internally displaced persons (IDPs) from Crimea and Donbas, as of 23 June; with additional unconfirmed reports of several thousand IDPs still within the eastern region itself.
In the 2010s, Belarus is still facing several challenges related to humanitarian issues, like the Chernobyl nuclear disaster legacy, the growing incidence of trafficking in human beings, TB and HIV incidence, and a serious demographic crisis marked by declining life expectancy, high mortality and morbidity rates, rapid population ageing and deteriorating health conditions.
25 April 2014 – “This is an opportunity to pay tribute to the emergency workers who responded, remember the more than 330,000 people who were evacuated from contaminated regions, and stand in solidarity with the millions who still live in the affected areas in Belarus, the Russian Federation and Ukraine,” said a statement issued by the spokesperson for the Secretary-General.