Marshall Islands: Drought - May 2013
The Government declared a state of emergency for the northern Marshall Islands on 19 Apr 2013 due to a prolonged dry season and severe drought experienced in Wotje and the atolls north of Majuro. On 8 May, the state of emergency was elevated to a state of drought disaster for a period of 30 days. The severe drought conditions have damaged or destroyed agriculture on many islands of the northern atolls. In addition, deteriorating health is reported in many locations. Four clusters (Health, Food Security, Logistics and WASH) have been established and government cluster leads have prepared specific response plans with support from the UNDAC Team. (OCHA, 21 May 2013)
On 29 May, the Government issued an Intermediate Response Plan for the drought stricken northern atolls. The plan requires US$ 4.6 million for WASH, Health, Food and logistics needs for the 6,384 people affected.
On 7 Jun, the state of drought disaster was extended for an additional 30 days into early July (OCHA, 11 Jun 2013).
As of 30 Sep, the affected populations continued to recover from drought effects as normal seasonal rainfall remained ongoing (USAID, 30 Sep 2013).
The Asia Pacific zone (APZ) of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) comprises the zone office in Kuala Lumpur, four regional offices in Suva (Pacific), Bangkok (Southeast Asia), Delhi (South Asia) and Beijing (East Asia) and 12 country offices, adopting a “best-positioned” strategy to support the national societies (NSs) in the zone according to their needs. Through this decentralized management structure, the Asia Pacific zone office directs the work of the regional and country offices.
Snapshot 12 – 19 August
In Syria, fighting between governmental forces and opposition groups has been concentrated in Aleppo, Deir-ez-Zor, Homs, Lattakia and Rural Damascus this week. Meanwhile, infighting is ongoing within the opposition. As during previous weeks, FSA forces have clashed with Islamist opposition groups on multiple occasions while Kurdish groups continued to fight with Islamist groups in the north of the country. The mass influx of Syrian refugees to neighbouring countries is ongoing. As of 19 August, over 1.9 million Syrians had fled the country.
In Syria, large-scale fighting between opposition and Government forces has been reported across Al-Hassakeh, Ar-Raqqa, Homs, Aleppo, and especially Lattakia and Damascus governorates. Increasing strife between combatants of the FSA and al-Qaeda affiliated Islamic fighters continue to also be reported, especially around Aleppo and its countryside. In addition, as clashes increased between Kurdish armed groups and fighters of the ISIS, the President of Iraqi Kurdistan openly floated the idea of staging an intervention in Syria to support fellow Kurds.
In Syria, Government forces are advancing in Homs and expected to retake opposition-held districts in the short-term, while operations have been ongoing in other major cities, including Aleppo and Damascus. Meanwhile, infighting within opposition forces is spreading between various armed groups. Clashes are continuously reported between Kurdish fighters and al-Qaeda affiliated Islamists near the border with Turkey in Al-Hassakeh and Ar-Raqqa governorates.
Snapshot 22– 29 July
In Syria, despite the start of the Holy Month of Ramadan on 9 July, large-scale operations have been ongoing in several major cities, including Damascus, Homs, Aleppo, and Idlib with regime forces pushing to extend the gains obtained over the past weeks with support of the Lebanese Hezbollah fighters. Infighting within opposition forces has escalated in recent days with clashes reported between various Islamist and more moderate groups, notably between Kurdish fighters and al-Qaeda affiliated Islamists near the border with Turkey in Al-Hassakeh governorate.
In Syria, the regime’s offensive on Homs governorate and city is on-going with artillery and air strikes, displacing 400,000 and leaving an estimated 2,500 and 4,000 civilians trapped in and around the city. Some 2 million people in Government-controlled areas in Aleppo are affected by a siege of opposition forces that is blocking food and medicines from entering several areas. While the UN and the Red Cross have called for a truce during the month of Ramadan, the cease-fire was rejected by the Government.
In Syria, the regime’s offensive on Homs governorate and city is on-going with artillery and air strikes being reported. An estimated, 2,500 and 4,000 civilians are allegedly trapped in and around the city. Meanwhile, the number of Syrian refugees in neighboring countries continues to increase and is now approaching 1.75 million people according to UNHCR.
Snapshot 17 June - 24 June 2013
Snapshot 10 June - 17 June 2013
In Syria, the Syrian Government forces captured Qusayr, a strategic city in Homs province connecting the capital to the Mediterranean coast. Forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad were reported to have killed at least 100 people who fled the town of Qusayr after it was captured by army troops on 9 June. The UN and the ICRC have requested humanitarian access to Qusayr, but this request was turned down by the Syrian Government despite winning assurances of access earlier in the week.
Snapshot 27 May – 03 June
In Syria, the government military continued its offensive on opposition-controlled Qusayr, a strategic city in Homs province connecting the capital to the Mediterranean coast. Humanitarian agencies expressed alarm over the fate of thousands of civilians still trapped in the city. The UN estimates that over 6.8 million people are in need of humanitarian aid in Syria. While an estimated 5 million people are internally displaced, the number of Syrians registered or awaiting registration in host countries has surpassed 1.6 million.
Myanmar - Inter-communal violence displaced approximately 1,400 people in Lashio, Shan state on 29 May. Since then many have returned home, however nearly 440 people remain in two sites as of 2 June. The Gov., private donors and humanitarian agencies are providing assistance.
Snapshot 21 - 27 May 2013
Bangladesh - Tropical Storm Mahasen struck southern districts on 16 May. The Joint Needs assessment (JNA) identified unment needs in shelter, WASH and livelihoods in Patuakali, Bhola and Barguna. The govt and humanitarian partners have started responding and further assessments are being conducted. Source: PDC, OCHA
Bangladesh - Tropical Storm Mahasen struck southern districts on 16 May. The Joint Needs Assessment (JNA) is ongoing and preliminary findings are due to be presented tomorrow (21 May). 17 people have reportedly lost their lives, JNA results will provide a better understand of the impact of the cyclone on shelter and livelihoods.
Source: PDC, OCHA Flash Update No. 7
Marshall Islands - The Government has issued an elevated state of disaster due to the severe drought in northern parts of the country, affecting between 3,200 and 5,000 people. Assessments are ongoing and an UNDAC team has arrived in country. WASH is the priority as there is a priority need for safe drinking water.