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23 Jan 2017 description

23/01/2017 – Colombo, Sri Lanka: The Sri Lanka Red Cross Society’s Colombo Branch today took steps to distribute cash grants to flood affected people (2016) within the Homagama Divisional Secretariat area. These cash grants are aimed at providing livelihood support to these people. SLRCS has provided these cash grants with the support from Oxfam Sri Lanka. 15,000 rupees were provided to 200 families in the initial stage.

23 Jan 2017 description

As any family member searching for a missing loved one can tell you, enforced disappearance is a crime without end. Until parents, wives, siblings, and children know the truth about the fate of a missing family member, they can find it almost impossible to seek justice and reparation for crimes they have suffered, and cannot properly mourn their loss.

19 Jan 2017 description

A special discussion was held at the President's Official Residence today (18) under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena, to look into the preparations at Ministerial level to provide essential reliefs to the public during the impending drought situation in Sri Lanka.

The President has given instructions to appoint a special committee comprising Secretaries of the Ministries of Power and Energy, Mahaweli and Water Supply, to make quick decisions in the process of providing relief to the people minimizing the difficulties.

18 Jan 2017 description

Officials are removing taxes on imported rice, restricting reservoir use and looking for alternatives to hydropower as drought looms

By Amantha Perera

COLOMBO, Jan 18 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - With rainfall in many areas just a third of that last year and many water reservoirs far below normal levels, Sri Lankans have begun holding traditional ceremonies to invoke rain - some with the participation of President Maithripala Sirisena.

17 Jan 2017 description

Switzerland - IOM reports that 2,876 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea in 2017, through 15 January, arriving mostly in Greece and Italy, compared with 23,664 through the first 14 days of January, 2016.

There have been 219 estimated deaths, compared with 91 during the first two weeks of 2015. This fatalities figure is considered low by IOM’s Missing Migrants Project, which is investigating reports that surfaced over the weekend that would add at least 200 deaths to the total.

16 Jan 2017 description


  • Sri Lanka is experiencing drought. Assessments revealed that 915,000 people have been affected in 23 districts among the 25 districts in Sri Lanka.

  • The Ministry of Disaster Management and WFP jointly organized Simex – a ‘Simulation Exercise’. The three-day exercise enabled one hundred emergency response experts from the Government, UN agencies and NGOs to coordinate a timely and effective response to a national emergency.

Operational Updates

15 Jan 2017 description

The Epidemiology Unit of the Ministry of Health has reported 1,311 patients island-wide suspected as dengue so far this year.

About 35 Percent of them have been reported from the Western Province.

The Unit said that this situation highlights the need for clearing the possible dengue breeding places in the surrounding area.

Further the public are asked to immediately go for treatment if the fever remains for over three days.

13 Jan 2017 description


​The ECDC Communicable Disease Threats Report (CDTR) is a weekly bulletin for epidemiologists and health professionals on active public health threats. This issue covers the period 8-14 January 2016 and includes updates on Legionnaires' disease, Zika virus and seasonal influenza.

13 Jan 2017 description

There will be a lack of rain fall leading to a severe a drought during the coming three months and the public is asked to use water and electricity carefully, said Minister of Disaster Management Anura Priyadarshana Yapa.

He was addressing a press conference today (13th Jan.) at the Department of Government Information.

13 Jan 2017 description

Army troops belonging to the 14 (Volunteer) Sri Lanka Light Infantry (SLLI) renovated an idling building to start a pre-school at 'Ranaviru Piyasa' village in Sampathnuwara recently (10th January 2017). After identifying the requirement of a preschool in 'Ranaviru Piyasa' village army troops converted the building to a nursery with the assistance from the villagers.

12 Jan 2017 description


The Lessons Learned Portal Project is a recommendation by participants of the February 2015 Expert Forum in Antalya, Turkey, a gathering of more than 90 participants that focused on “Lessons Learned about Lessons Learned about Hydro-meteorological Disaster Risk Reduction in a Changing Climate.”

12 Jan 2017 description

By Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh, WHO Regional Director for South-East Asia

On the sixth anniversary of the last case of wild poliovirus in the South-East Asia Region, World Health Organization commends countries in the Region for their continued efforts to protect children against this crippling virus and maintain the Region’s polio-free status, despite challenging conditions.

11 Jan 2017 description

Key Messages

  • Sri Lanka is experiencing a drought at present over most parts of the country from the beginning of the year 2016. Even though Sri Lanka experienced a spell of extremely heavy rain during midMay, the total cumulative rainfall received to date during 2016 is below normal and highly erratic as both the south west and north east monsoons failed to bring enough rainfall.

11 Jan 2017 description
report UN Children's Fund

The South Asia region is prone to flooding, landslides, droughts and earthquakes, and faces a number of protracted conflicts and related internal and cross-border population displacement. By the end of March 2017, the refugee return crisis from Pakistan and Iran to Afghanistan – brought about by the obligatory or forced repatriation of Afghan refugees from both Pakistan and Iran to their country of origin – will affect an estimated 1.5 million people, 60 per cent of whom are children under 18.

05 Jan 2017 description

Immigration Detention And Community Statistics Summary

At 30 November 2016, there were 1414 people in immigration detention facilities, including 1158 in immigration detention on the mainland and 256 in immigration detention on Christmas Island.

A further 560 people were living in the community after being approved for a residence determination and 26,186 were living in the community after grant of a Bridging Visa E.

01 Jan 2017 description


By Derek Verbakel and Marie Pavageau Research staff, IPCS

31 Dec 2016 description

Author: Ann Moey, Head of Communications, IUCN Asia with contribution from Anushae Parakh, Programme Assistant for Mangroves for the Future

Near the Sundarbans, home to the largest mangrove forest in the world, Promila makes her living by making mats out of a grass-like wetlands plant called ‘reed’. Depending on size, these mats are sold at US$1 to $7 through a community enterprise established by Promila and her friends.