Yemen UNHCR Flash Update, 9 - 15 June 2017

Report
from UN High Commissioner for Refugees
Published on 15 Jun 2017

KEY FIGURES

18.8 million people in need

1,988,946 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs)

81 Percentage of IDPs displaced for more than a year

900,258 IDP returnees

860,061 recipients of NFIs since March 2015

280,096 refugees and asylum seekers

21,698 new arrivals to Yemeni coast since 1 January 2017

FUNDING

USD 114.6 million requested for IDPs and refugees in Yemen for 2017

OPERATIONAL UPDATE

As conflict continues on all frontlines, UNHCR teams across the country worked to respond to meet the needs of the most vulnerable internally displaced persons (IDPs), IDP returnees and refugees. With five operational hubs, including Sana’a, Sa’ada, Hudaydah, Ibb and Aden, UNHCR has the capacity to reach those most in need with lifesaving assistance; even in some of the hardest to reach areas when access permits.

However funding remains a key challenge, with just 28% of the operation funded half way through the year. UNHCR is calling on donors to ensure that the situation in Yemen does not become an abandoned crisis.

The cholera outbreak continues to spread misery across Yemen, resulting in the first confirmed refugee deaths of three Somali children, who passed away in May as a result of cholera. UNHCR has documented a significant rise in the number of suspected cases in Basateen, with 44 cases referred to the UNHCR clinic. Across the country, the number of suspected cases continues to grow, affecting over 124,000 people and resulting in 922 deaths. In addition to collapsing health services; the rainy season, widespread food insecurity and malnutrition are also playing a key role in the spread of the epidemic.

IDP RESPONSE

UNHCR and partners are working hard to support 9,200 vulnerable families with rental subsidies. Assessments are underway to disburse rental assistance in the governorates of Aden, Lahj and Al-Dalea, in the south of Yemen, and Sa’ada, Amran, Hajjah, Dhamar, Ibb, Taizz and Sana’a in the north. By the end of July, the programme will bring welcome relief to 64,400 people in total, by providing US $300 for each family to cover three months’ worth of rental costs.

UNHCR continues in its efforts to respond to the shelter needs of displaced families across Yemen. During the past week, UNHCR distributed core relief items for 260 internally displaced families (1,512 individuals), along with 50 emergency shelter kits across seven districts in Sa’ada Governorate. In Abs district in Hajjah Governorate, heavy rains wreaked havoc on shelters, with UNHCR planning to support the group with core relief items. Efforts are underway to respond to 398 flood-affected families in Abs district.

In the south, the rehabilitation of 1,000 damaged houses in Aden, Lahj and Al-Dalea is well underway, with 65% of homes now assessed by UNHCR partner, Society for Humanitarian Solidarity (SHS). In an effort to support displaced and returning families, the disbursement of a cash grant will allow families to carry out essential housing repairs.

Distribution of the funds is planned to take place at the end of June.

REFUGEE RESPONSE

UNHCR is working with health partners to intensify active cholera case identification, provide health education and encourage people to seek medical care in the event of suspected cholera. In Basateen, in the south of Yemen, four deaths in May have been confirmed as cholera deaths, including three Somali refugee children and a 60 year old Yemeni woman. These are the first reported deaths in Basateen due to cholera. In Kharaz camp, home to 16,000 people, there have been no referrals and no deaths reported thus far. Awareness sessions, flyers, along with medical assistance through UNHCR health partners are ongoing.

UNHCR, in close coordination with IOM, Yemen authorities and the Somali Consul, are working toward the roll out of the Assisted Spontaneous Returns (ASR) programme for Somalis. So far, some 466 individuals have been counselled at established return help desks in Kharaz camp and Basateen. As the situation in Yemen continues to deteriorate, Somalis have received information on conditions in return locations in Somalia and detailed information on the voluntary return process.