Afghanistan

Flash Update No. 2, 27 August 2020: Conflict displacement in Kunduz, Afghanistan

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Situation Report
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Key Highlights

• Approximately 9,150 households (approx. 64,050 people) have been displaced in Kunduz city and villages across Khanabad and Imam Sahib districts due to ongoing fighting. According to assessments, 27,000 people are confirmed to need immediate humanitarian assistance.

• 2,500 households are dispersed in remote villages of Khanabad, 1,500 in Imam Sahib, 580 in Aqtash district, and 6,670 in Kunduz city.

• Clashes between a Non-State Armed Group (NSAG) and Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) continue in Khanabad and Imam Shaib districts, further displacement is likely.

• 1,909 households have been assessed so far, in both government and NSAG controlled areas; humanitarians are dispatching assistance and mobilising further resources to expedite the response to urgent needs.

Situation Overview:

Since 16 August 2020, ongoing conflict between an NSAG and the ANSF in several villages of Khanabad district and in Imam Sahib District has displaced approximately 9,150 households or 64,050 people. Many families have been affected by multiple conflict events and reportedly show little inclination to return to their areas of origin, even if relative improvements in the security situation were to take place. Those families who have decided to return to their areas of origin are exposed to high risks due to IEDs and mines planted along the roads.

Humanitarian Impact:

The majority of IDPs are sheltering with relatives or in rental accommodation, but others are staying in makeshift shelters or open spaces throughout Kunduz city. The IDPs’ living conditions are dire. The most urgent needs are food, shelter and safe drinking water.

The displacement is happening in a context where COVID-19 continues to spread. Compliance with COVID-19 preventative measures is not possible for the majority of displaced families, exposing vulnerable people and hosting communities to heightened risks. WASH facilities are currently limited and social distancing is not possible for many IDPs. Camp-like settlements further compound the risk of COVID-19 transmission and are not advised in this response.

The humanitarian response will be concurrent with ongoing COVID-19 response activities, straining limited resources.
Additional assessment teams and resources to provide emergency shelter and handwashing facilities to IDPs staying in open spaces are urgently needed.

Coordination:

Humanitarian partners are working with Provincial authorities to mobilise and expedite humanitarian assistance. Needs assessments are currently underway. Since the beginning of the displacement crisis, 1,909 households have been assessed by joint teams, in both government and NSAG held areas. Humanitarian organisations have deployed 21 joint assessment teams in Kunduz. ERM partners have also agreed to modify assessment and selection methodologies to facilitate rapid, large-scale beneficiary identification and registration.

Following the regional inter-cluster coordination meeting held on 26 August, the ES/NFI Cluster signaled capacity to immediately assist 1,000 families, with intent to scale up support to 2,500 families shortly. The Health Cluster will provide mobile health teams to deliver critical on-site services. Other humanitarian partners (UNICEF, SCI, ACTED, DACAAR) are mobilising resources to support in the areas of multi-purpose cash, food, NFI and hygiene assistance. WFP has stated its intent to dispatch food for 500 families, with additional stocks ready to be dispatched based on assessed needs. The Nutrition Cluster has confirmed enough stock of nutritional supplements and medications in BPHS facilities in case MAM or SAM cases are detected.

The World Bank has also engaged with humanitarian partners to ensure coordination of any response on their side.

Further updates will be released as required.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.