WFP Emergency Report No. 10 of 2003

Report
from World Food Programme
Published on 07 Mar 2003


This report includes:
A) International Women's Day

B) Eastern and Central Africa Region: (1) Ethiopia, (2) Eritrea, (3) Democratic Republic of Congo, (4) Republic of Congo, (5) Burundi

C) Southern Africa Region: (1) Regional overview, (2) Madagascar, (3) Mozambique, (4) Zimbabwe, (5) Malawi, (6) Angola, (7) Tanzania, (8) Zambia, (9) Lesotho, (10) Namibia, (11) Swaziland

D) West Africa Region: (1) Côte d'Ivoire, (2) Guinea Bissau, (3) Mauritania

E) Asia Region: (1) DPR of Korea

F) West and Central Asia Region: (1) Afghanistan, (2) Pakistan

G) Eastern Europe Region: (1) North Caucasus

H) Latin America and Caribbean Region: (1) El Salvador

From David Morton, Director of the Transport, Preparedness and Response Division (OTP); available on the Internet on the WFP Home Page (www.wfp.org), or by e-mail from Carlo.Scaramella@wfp.org, Chief of the Emergency Preparedness and Response Unit (OEP).

For information on resources, donors are requested to contact Valerie.Sequeira@wfp.org at WFP Rome, telephone 39 06 6513 2009. Media queries should be directed to Trevor.Rowe@wfp.org, telephone 39 06 6513 2602. The address of WFP is Via Cesare Giulio Viola 68, Parco dei Medici, 00148 Rome, Italy.

A) International Women's Day

(a) WFP marked the International Women's Day with an awards ceremony for its staff and partners' staff who have helped reduce the impact of the HIV/AIDS pandemic through food aid. By focusing on women and HIV/AIDS, WFP is reaffirming its commitment to place HIV/AIDS at the centre of its programmes. This commitment followed the Millennium Development Goals, declared in 2000 by UN member states. WFP food is distributed in nutritional centres, schools, hospitals, refugee and displaced persons' camps, as well as in workshops and training centres, where prevention occurs through raising awareness.

(b) An agreement signed last month by WFP and UNAIDS formally increases their co-ooperation in saving millions of lives, especially in Africa, South-East Asia and the Caribbean. WFP takes responsibility for the management of HIV/AIDS-related food programmes, while UNAIDS offers a range of technical assistance. Joint efforts with a special focus on pregnant women and orphans will be directed to emergencies, and the two sides have pledged to make food security an integral part of the overall struggle against HIV/AIDS.

(c) While the worst of the HIV/AIDS pandemic is yet to come, with death rates expected to peak from 2007-2009, WFP's Executive Director stressed the importance of recognizing and encouraging individuals' efforts as well as focusing on women's key role.

B) Eastern and Central Africa Region: (1) Ethiopia, (2) Eritrea, (3) Democratic Republic of Congo, (4) Republic of Congo, (5) Burundi

1) Ethiopia

(a) The Ethiopian Government's Disaster Prevention and Preparedness Commission (DPPC) is currently making preparations for multi-agency (DPPC/WFP/NGOs) assessment teams to conduct a special reassessment exercise in areas where regional authorities have indicated that people currently classified as under close monitoring need to be included in food distributions. 11 million people are currently targeted for food distributions between April and July. In the joint Government/UN appeal for 2003 released in early December, there was special reference to an additional three million people possibly at risk, who needed to be closely monitored to ensure that if necessary they would also become food aid beneficiaries.

(b) Cereal rations have been at the rate of 12.5 kg/person/month in most areas where distributions are taking place, in order to make sure that pledges received so far can cover needs as widely as possible over coming months. Even at this ration rate, cereal pledges cover needs only until June. Pledges for badly needed blended food are also insufficient. The current relief food shortfall is over 600,000 tons, or 42 percent of total requirements for the year of 1.46 million tons.

(c) Over 100,000 tons of food aid, including some 8,000 tons of supplementary food, has been dispatched for February distributions to 8.3 million people. Nearly half is being distributed through NGOs. Food for March distributions has been delivered early to certain new hot spots, such as several districts of Gurage and Silti zones in Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples Region (SNNPR), which were due to start receiving food this month. Throughout the drought-affected parts of the country, malnutrition is being monitored closely as an increasing number of people come to the end of their small harvests from December and become dependent on food aid.

(d) According to the National Meteorological Services Agency (NMSA) forecast for the March-May (belg) season, near normal to above normal rainfall will be received in north-eastern Ethiopia, including most of Afar Region, parts of eastern Tigray Region, eastern Amhara Region, central Oromiya Region and northern Somali Region. This is seen as promising for crop production in Belg dependent areas in the north-eastern highlands and for pasture and water regeneration for pastoralists in hard hit Afar Region. The rest of the country should expect near normal to below normal rainfall for the March-May period, a forecast which could have a negative impact on long-cycle crop production, particularly in SNNPR where a portion of the population is Belg dependent on coffee and chat cultivation, and on the availability of pasture and water for livestock particularly in Somali Region. The latter region is presently experiencing the jilaal or long dry season and depends on these rains (gu rains) to alleviate dry conditions.

(e) Cereal prices around the country slightly declined in January after a period of continual increase between June and December, 2002. Possible reasons for the drop include ongoing food aid distributions in drought affected areas and farmers' and traders' optimism about the prospects for the upcoming belg season. However prices are still substantially higher than normal.

2) Eritrea

(a) On 28 February, WFP and staff from local hospitals and health centres participated in a training session on the treatment of severe malnutrition and the management of Therapeutic Feeding Programmes (TFP), offered by the Ministry of Health in the Debub region. Given the rapidly deteriorating nutrition situation in the Debub region, WFP will assist the Ministry of Health in extending the Therapeutic Feeding Programme in April to as many hospitals as possible in the region. In an effort to further support an effective response to the nutritional situation, WFP is sponsoring a Nutrition Consultant to work within the Ministry of Health for six months, starting 1 March and focusing primarily on setting up a National Nutrition Surveillance System.

(b) Water shortages continue to be a serious problem throughout the country. In the Northern Red Sea sub regions of Adobha, Nakfa and Afabet, rivers have almost run dry. In Adi Quala sub region in Debub, water points have dried up and people are walking two hours in search of alternative sources. Similar reports were received from the Gash Barka region. Lack of water and water containers were noted as critical problems in the implementation of the School Feeding Programme (SFP) in Northern Red Sea areas, Anseba and Debub.

(c) WFP field monitors observed dry cultivation taking place in the Berik sub region of Debub, in preparation for the early rains. A spate diversion site was visited in Shieb in the Northern Red Sea region. Insufficient water had been collected in the canal to flood the intended agricultural fields; few crops were observed in the area.

3) Democratic Republic of Congo

(a) The security situation in the eastern part of DR Congo remained poor. As a result, all UN humanitarian activities were suspended south of Kalemie, on the shores of Lake Tanganyika, due to clashes between Mai Mai and RCD troops. In the area of Malemba-Nkulu (in the central part of Katanga province), violent clashes led to the displacement of local populations. Insecurity reached its peak on 26 February with widespread violence in the north and south of Bunia. Large movements of displaced persons were reported and a needs assessment was carried out. A MONUC (United Nations Mission of Observers in DRC) helicopter was attacked while returning from Bunia. All MONUC flights to Bunia were subsequently suspended. A MONUC humanitarian mission in February indicated that famine could break out in the town of Bunia, controlled by the Armée Nationale Congolaise (ANC).

(b) A census conducted by UNHCR among the Angolan refugee population in Kahemba indicated that 80 percent of those surveyed were willing to return to Angola. Spontaneous return of refugees continued to be registered. According to UNHCR, there were still 5,338 Angolan refugees in the area, 4,839 of whom received WFP assistance. In preparations for the repatriation of the refugees, GTZ carried out an evaluation of passable roads and identified only one feasible passage through Napasa, Bindu and Shamazamu. OXFAM Quebec investigated the nutritional status of both the refugee and the host populations in Kahemba. The screening showed that the refugee population in the sites were better off than the host populations. Severe malnutrition rates were 0.68 percent among refugee children living in camps against 1.48 percent among children in the host population. The moderate malnutrition rate stood at 1.65 percent among refugee children against 4.15 percent among Congolese children. The situation amongst refugees not living in camps was similar to that of the host population.

(c) WFP implemented three rounds of airlift operations to areas only accessible by air, due to high insecurity. From 16 January to 12 February, almost 1,000 tons of food were delivered from Kasese into Bunia, covering the needs of 110,000 IDPs. With the air operation to Kindu, the capital city of Maniema Province, 6,750 beneficiaries received 180 tons of food. On 22 February, WFP resumed the delivery of food to isolated areas in North Katanga, where high malnutrition rates prevail. A total of 936 tons of food were airlifted from Kalemie to Kabalo, Kongolo and Nyunzu. The airlift will support 30,000 beneficiaries for 4 months and is expected to end on 30 March. In the north western part of DR Congo, a barge with 122 tons of food left for Businga, in support of 25,000 returnees, who emerged from their hideouts in the forest in June/July 2002. A UN inter-agency needs assessment mission in the area, led by FAO, recommended seeds protection packages to provide the beneficiaries with sustainable means of food security and self sufficiency. In partnership with World Vision, MONUC and the national railway company SNCC, WFP moved 1,200 tons of food to Ankoro to the benefit of 48,000 IDPs. In the eastern part of the country, support to therapeutic and supplementary feeding remained a major activity.

4) Republic of Congo

(a) On 4 March, WFP provided seven tons of food to support the population affected by the outbreak of ebola virus in the Cuvette region. The food will be distributed to the affected population, including patients, families and displaced persons within the sealed-off area, in collaboration with the Congolese Red Cross, WHO and the Ministries of Health and Forest. The food will be transported from Brazzaville to the region by vehicles provided by the Government.

(b) Since the outbreak of the disease, the region of Cuvette has been completely sealed-off. The border with neighbouring Gabon has been closed, disrupting the main supply chain to the area and bringing economic and subsistence activities to a standstill.

5) Burundi

(a) While discussions on the cease-fire accord implementation continued , the security situation remained volatile in several provinces, with the provinces of Kayanza, Cibitoke, Ruyigi, Bujumbura Rural and Muramvya witnessing attacks. Looting was reported in Cibitoke, Muramvya, Ngozi and Kayanza provinces. In Bujumbura Rural province, an attack on a military position by FNL fighters led to the displacement of a number of people.

(b) WFP's pipeline situation remained vulnerable. The Seeds Protection Rations (SPR) programme, supported by WFP, requires 9,366 tons of food to be distributed in regular dispatches between 20 February and 15 March. In mid-March, WFP will resume targeted distributions to drought-affected vulnerable people in the country. An additional 16,150 tons of food is required to meet these needs until the main harvest in June.

(c) Insecurity in Ngozi, Bujumbura Rural and Ruyigi provinces prevented planned SPR distributions to 71,270 beneficiaries. From 24 February to 2 March, 915 tons of SPRs were distributed to 83,200 beneficiaries in the named provinces. Under the "Return package for returnees" project, 30 tons of food was distributed to 555 returnees from Tanzania, temporarily hosted in transit sites in Ngozi and Muyinga. Under the Food for Work (FFW) scheme, 40 tons of food was released to 500 participants, working in projects related to environment regeneration. An additional 46 tons of food was released under the Protracted Relief and Recovery Operation to assist 2,400 persons in social centres.

(d) From 24 February to 2 March, WFP monitoring teams conducted a food security assessment missions in Bururi and Mwaro provinces. The WFP teams reported that the assessed communes were affected by insufficient rainfall, causing late sowing and depletion of food reserves.

C) Southern Africa Region: (1) Regional overview, (2) Madagascar, (3) Mozambique, (4) Zimbabwe, (5) Malawi, (6) Angola, (7) Tanzania, (8) Zambia, (9) Lesotho, (10) Namibia, (11) Swaziland

1) Regional overview

(a) The Government of Madagascar declared a state of "famine" in five districts during the week following the deteriorating food security situation in the south. WFP is assisting in the preparation of consolidated national strategies. A total of 80 communities and 60,000 people are now affected by drought in the south.

(b) In southern Mozambique, strong winds and heavy rains following tropical cyclone 'Japhet', which hit the coast of northern Inhambane and southern Sofala Provinces on 2 March, affected around 23,000 people according to Government reports. 'Japhet' is the second cyclone to hit Mozambique this year. On 4 March, the cyclone hit Gutu District (Masvingo Province), Zimbabwe, and assessments of the situation are ongoing.

2) Madagascar

(a) From 26 February to 4 March, WFP, in collaboration with CARE, distributed 51 tons of food on the east coast.

(b) Torrential rains and thunderstorms from cyclone 'Japhet' affected the southern coast during the week without causing any major damage. A joint WFP, Catholic Relief Services (CRS) and donor mission on resourcing and implementation of activities in the south will take place from 18 to 21 March.

3) Mozambique

(a) From 26 February to 4 March, WFP dispatched over 4,300 tons of food. Cyclone 'Japhet' hit the coast of northern Inhambane and southern Sofala Provinces on 2 March, damaging houses and infrastructure. The inundation of a bridge on the national highway between southern Sofala and northern Inhambane is of particular concern, as transport of food from the WFP warehouse in Beira to Gaza and Inhambane Provinces could become affected if the level of Buzi River continues to rise. WFP, the National Institute for Disaster Management (INGC) and implementing partners continued to assess the situation.

(b) The Famine Early Warning System Network (FEWS NET) issued a food security warning on 28 February highlighting that the deteriorating food security status of vulnerable populations in the drought-affected southern and central areas was expected to worsen over the next twelve months. WFP concurs that the situation is continuing to deteriorate and increased monitoring will be required for the central areas of northern Manica and Sofala and southern Tete Provinces. WFP accompanied the National Institute for Disaster Management (INGC) and local authorities on a visit to Sabie (Momba District) and Changalane (Namaacha District) in Maputo Province following local reports of hunger. The team did not discover signs of malnutrition, but the maize crop was found to be partially lost.

4) Zimbabwe

(a) In its largest effort to date, WFP distributed over 54,500 tons of food to 4.3 million beneficiaries during the month of February, representing an increase of 20 percent from the previous month. During the week, transport of WFP food to 30,000 beneficiaries in Dambakurima and Chadereka (Mashonaland Central Province) was delayed due to flooding which swept away bridges over the Kadzi and Nyarutombo rivers. Riverbank gardens and late-planted crops in these areas were also affected. Roads and bridges in Kariba District (Mashonaland West Province) also sustained damage from heavy rains. The significant rainfall received throughout much of Zimbabwe during the past week should improve pasture and grazing lands and the seeding of millet and tobacco, but have come too late to benefit the maize crop. The maize harvest season this year is expected to begin later than normal and run from mid-April to May. Food from the parastatal Grain Marketing Board (GMB) was reported to be reaching relatively few people due to inadequate deliveries and inequitable distribution. The shortage of GMB food led to increases in the parallel market price of maize.

5) Malawi

(a) From 26 February to 4 March, WFP dispatched over 3,530 tons of food to implementing partners. WFP held several meetings with donors, NGOs and the Government during the week to plan its activities over the next months. Under its Capacity Building Assistance programme, WFP provided computers and a database to facilitate the analysis of the impact of food distribution at household level to its implementing partners. Training of the Joint Emergency Food Aid Programme (JEFAP) stakeholders in EMOP monitoring, food distribution procedures and targeting criteria continued. A School Feeding Baseline enumerators training on the use of the standard baseline survey was held. The WFP School Feeding baseline survey will be carried out between 10 March and 2 April, and cover 122 schools in all eight districts.

6) Angola

(a) WFP and provincial partners are currently planning new humanitarian interventions in newly accessible areas of Kiwaba Nzoji and Soqueco (Malange Province). Following a recent rapid assessment of critical needs, WFP food will be provided from March until the next vulnerability assessment in October, complementing seed distributions planned by NGO partners.

(b) Landmines are hampering access to areas, and are a major and worsening obstacle to providing WFP humanitarian assistance. In Bie, an anti-tank landmine incident closed the road between Andulo and Gamba to UN personnel, for security reasons, isolating around 15,000 beneficiaries from humanitarian assistance in Gamba I and II GAs.

(c) During the week, 2,260 Angolan refugees returned from DR Congo to Uige and Zaire Provinces and were provided with WFP assistance.

7) Tanzania

(a) From 10 to 23 February, WFP completed distribution of a two-week ration in all refugee camps.

(b) From 2 to 23 February, 1,165 refugees voluntarily repatriated to mainly Muyinga and Kirundo Provinces in Burundi. At the same time, 718 new arrivals, reportedly fleeing on-going fighting in Ruyigi and Cankuzo Provinces, were registered in Kibondo. On 19 February, 47 refugees from Kibondo camps left for a resettlement programme in Norway.

8) Zambia

(a) From 26 February to 4 March, WFP dispatched 3,950 tons of food to implementing partners. Rumours that the flood gates of the Kariba Dam were about to be opened due to the excessive rains caused farmers in Luangwa District to start harvesting their crops early, potentially lessening crop yield. All Genetically Modified (GM) food was returned to Lusaka from the field. 485 tons of GMO food was dispatched from Zambia to Malawi, where it will be milled before distribution. The first workshop on post-harvest targeting for implementing partners was held in Lusaka on 5 March.

9) Lesotho

(a) From 26 February to 4 March, WFP distributed 1,700 tons of food to over 138,900 beneficiaries in seven districts. In addition, 335 tons of food were distributed under the emergency school feeding project in three districts. The Government issued a preliminary monitoring and evaluation report on implementation of the summer cropping programme during the week. The report indicates that although the vegetative crop stand is promising, total harvest projection is likely to be somewhat below normal due to delays in inputs to farmers during the planting season.

10) Namibia

(a) From 26 February to 4 March, 19,800 refugees, mostly Angolan, received WFP assistance. WFP's implementing partner African Humanitarian Action (AHA) reported that a total of 75 malnourished children were enrolled in the supplementary feeding centre in February. UNHCR reported over 200 new refugee arrivals, the majority from Rwanda and Burundi, during February.

11) Swaziland

(a) From 26 February to 4 March, WFP distributed 942 tons of food to over 58,700 beneficiaries. According to field reports from WFP food aid monitors, maize crops planted in early January were doing fairly well, and maize in the Middleveld was reported to be ripening. WFP facilitated a workshop to review the programming strategy for Swaziland on 25 February. Representatives from the Government, implementing partners and other UN agencies participated. Training in field targeting, distribution and monitoring was attended by Women's Relief Committee members and implementing partners. A WFP proposal for counselling and HIV/AIDS training of three members of the Women's Relief Committees at each food distribution point is under review.

D) West Africa Region: (1) Côte d'Ivoire, (2) Guinea Bissau, (3) Mauritania

1) Côte d'Ivoire

(a) The joint FAO/WFP Emergency Needs assessment concluded that displaced people are among the most affected by the crisis, in particular those who are not hosted by resident families. Other population groups are facing food shortages, including the urban population, especially the marginal wage earners and the now increasing number of jobless city dwellers; and the commercial farmers in the North who largely depend on market purchases and who face great difficulties to market their cotton and sugar.

(b) In some villages in the center-west (Daloa) and center-east (Daokro), the number of IDPs exceeds the resident population figure. Existing food stocks preserved for the lean period (March to September) will be exhausted 3-4 months earlier. The gradual loss of employment opportunities and rising food prices for 43 percent of the urban population is expected to force many people to return to their home villages (1.8 to 2 million in Abidjan are internal migrants). The urban exodus will cause temporary food shortages in those rural areas. The worst affected rural populations are cotton and sugar producers in the North. Although the cotton harvest progresses normally, the closure of 3 to 4 cotton processing plants, transport problems, and the fact that payments for the last season were not made, are causing a desperate situation for some 150,000 cotton farmers. It is estimated that at least 30,000 families almost entirely depend on cotton sales for their food security. Also some 3,000 sugar workers and an unknown number of sugar cane farmers in the north are in a difficult situation. As the produce cannot be marketed in the South, factories cannot pay their workers.

(c) From 22 to 28 February, WFP carried out food distribution to over 8,100 Liberian refugees in Nicla camp. In the western areas, ICRC and the national Red Cross reported about 9,500 displaced persons in nine sites around Toulepleu and an estimated 7,000 displaced in villages outside Toulepleu. WFP will verify these numbers as soon as security allows. 35 tons of food was delivered to Caritas for 1,300 beneficiaries in the UNHCR transit centre and 1,070 IDPs in Tabou. A joint UN mission composed of WFP, OCHA, UNHCR, UNSECOORD visited Daloa and Guiglo on 5 March to assess the humanitarian situation for IDPs and refugees in the west.

(d) In the northern areas WFP supported 10 kitchens, benefiting 6,500 children under 5 and 3,500 caretakers. In central areas the following numbers of IDPs were reported: 42,100 in the Daloa region, more than 7,800 in Bonoufla, over 2,200 in Belle Ville and 4,100 in Zahibo. However, the number of IDPs in Daloa needs to be verified before starting delivering assistance. In the meantime, food stocks from previous distributions in Daloa, Bonoufla and Belle Ville will be distributed to the most vulnerable. WFP's implementing partner Action Contre le Faim (ACF) is preparing a more detailed report on nutrition and food security in the region. During the week, 13 tons of food was delivered to CARE in Didievi in support of 2,700 IDPs.

2) Guinea Bissau

(a) The rainfall deficit registered throughout the country in the agricultural season of 2002/2003 caused a sharp decline in total cereal production, amounting to a drop of 12 percent compared to the 2001/2002 agricultural season. This will exacerbate food insecurity in the country, mainly in the northeast border regions with Senegal. WFP continues to monitor the food security situation in the most affected regions.

(b) From 1 to 28 February, WFP provided support to communities in the most affected regions of Cacheu, Oio and Tombali, through Food For Work projects, such as road rehabilitation and schools construction, in order to mitigate the impact of food insecurity.

(c) Similarly, WFP increased individual food rations to vulnerable groups such as children under five, malnourished pregnant women and lactating mothers, and HIV and tuberculosis-affected patients. The school year started after four months of negotiations between the teachers' union and Government for payment of salaries. This delay has jeopardised WFP's School Feeding Programme, which could only be fully implemented at the end of February. In view of the problems related to the public education system, WFP is reinforcing partnership with other institutions, mainly NGOs, in order to encourage community-based initiatives.

(d) On 13 February, WFP signed a Letter of Understanding with the Government for the Implementation of PRRO 10148.0. On 10 February, a similar document defining the responsibilities of each agency, was signed between UNICEF and WFP for collaboration in the field of education, literacy, rehabilitation of schools, construction of latrines and canteens.

(e) Almost 30,200 beneficiaries were assisted by WFP and 1,048 tons of food were distributed under Food-for-Work, School Feeding, Health and Nutrition and Food-for-Training programmes during the month of February. WFP also implemented a deworming programme in partnership with WHO and the Ministry of Health in the regions of Bafata, Tombali and Oio.

3) Mauritania

(a) In January, sparse rainfall raised concerns among rural populations, recalling the conditions of last winter. Livestock was being sold for very low prices. Harvest in January and February will provide populations with sustenance for one or two months only. Traditional cereals, such as sorghum and millet, have seen their price rising continuously since the start of the year and are conspicuously absent from rural markets. In all rural areas the exodus of people to urban centres continues. WFP's Executive Board mission visited Aftout, the area most affected by the drought, from 22 to 26 February. The mission members were able to observe the serious situation faced by the affected populations.

(b) WFP, in collaboration with World Vision International, OXFAM GB, Lutheran World Federation and ACORD, has initiated distributions for 246,500 persons targeted under EMOP 10147.0 . Commodities are now being programmed against regional EMOP 10249.0. So far some 700 tons of WSB and 10,000 tons of wheat have been announced to arrive in April 2003 against a total WFP commitment of 43,632 tons for Mauritania.

(c) Early intervention is considered crucial. Malnutrition rates in some areas of Mauritania are already at crisis levels and there is a risk of starvation due to lack of food between June and September 2003, not only in Mauritania but also in the other countries covered by the regional EMOP. EMOP 10249.0 is currently facing a shortfall of 44,000 tons, or 80 percent of the total requirements. WFP needs USD 22 million to quickly purchase food rations to help feed 420,000 people suffering from three consecutive years of severe drought in southern Mauritania, as well as 160,000 people in Cape Verde, The Gambia, Mali and Senegal.

E) Asia Region: (1) DPR of Korea

1) DPR of Korea

(a) Cereal distributions to children in nurseries, kindergartens and pregnant and nursing women, suspended for some regions since late last year, is expected to resume in the middle of March, after the arrival of 47,000 tons of wheat. With this shipment, the food needs of pregnant and nursing women, children in orphanages, nurseries, kindergartens and primary schools, the elderly and caregivers at children's institutions will be met until late April. If no new contributions are received, WFP distributions to vulnerable groups will need to be suspended again from May onwards.

(b) To prevent a worsening of the already widespread hunger and malnutrition in the country, donor allocations of 77,000 tons are urgently required, to cover the WFP operation through to the summer of 2003. In addition to 60,000 tons of cereals, requirements include 2,200 tons of Dried Skimmed Milk (DSM); 8,000 tons of Corn Soya Milk (CSM); 600 tons of sugar; 6,000 tons of pulses and 800 tons of oil.

(c) Despite indications of new contributions arriving in-country in the second quarter of 2003, the EMOP remains with no resources in the pipeline for the latter half of the year. It is imperative that additional contributions, including cereals, pulses, CSM, oil and sugar, are confirmed as soon as possible to cover the third and fourth quarters.

F) West and Central Asia Region: (1) Afghanistan, (2) Pakistan

1) Afghanistan

(a) From 27 February to 5 March, the security situation deteriorated in Afghanistan's Eastern region where several bombing incidents took place, including one in front of the WFP office in Jalal Abad and one directed at the Coalition Forces in Kunar province. No casualties or damage was reported. In addition, a WFP car was shot at between Kabul and Paktika provinces. No one was hurt in the incident but missions were temporarily suspended in the area, as well as in the five poppy-cultivating districts of Nangahar province. Tension also increased in the Southern region: an explosion killed two civilians in front of the Department of Foreign Affairs in Kandahar. Missions to Delaram, Gizab, Chora and Khas Trinkot districts were suspended due to increased insecurity and military operations of the coalition forces in the area. In the Northern region, missions to Gospandi district of Sari-Pul province remained suspended.

(b) From 27 February to 5 March, over 677,500 beneficiaries received 2,100 tons of food through various WFP activities, including Food for Work/Food for Asset Creation in which 46,200 beneficiaries received 387 tons of food; Food for Education in which 397,500 beneficiaries received 483 tons of food; Relief and Resettlement of IDPs and Refugees in which 56,500 IDPs received 137 tons of food and 10,900 refugees received 153 tons of food; Urban Vulnerable Bakery Projects in which 139,100 beneficiaries received 268 tons of food; Supplementary Feeding in which nearly 3,160 beneficiaries received 13 tons of food and Free Food Distributions in which 24,200 beneficiaries received 681 tons of food. As of 5 March, 36,200 tons, or 76 percent of the planned food commodities, were distributed to beneficiaries of the winterization programme.

(c) Interviews conducted with teachers and communities involved in the WFP Food for Education programme pointed to a positive impact of the food assistance on enrolment rates and the ability of students to concentrate and learn. In Kandahar, WFP, in collaboration with the Ministry of Reconstruction (MoR), UNHCR, and FAO as well as ten IDP representatives established a task force to explore ways to assist IDPs returning to Registan province. The task force will meet regularly to design implementation plans and follow-up on the project implementation.

(d) Cereal requirements for April to September 2003 amount to some 144,000 tons, against which 11,400 tons need to be resourced. Projected EMOP 10155.0 stocks at the end of March and consignments contributed under EMOP 10155.0, which will arrive after March 2003, are expected to be sufficient to meet the cereal requirements until September, after which no cereals will be available. The non-cereal requirements under the PRRO consist of pulses, vegetable oil, wheat soya blend, sugar, iodized salt and biscuits. Total requirements for the second and third quarter of 2003 amount to nearly 35,000 tons. In order to prevent breaks in the pipeline in July, 6,300 tons of oil and 1,100 tons of WSB are required. WFP is seeking cash contributions to enable regional procurement of 800 tons of iodized salt required to meet the second and third quarter needs. Afghanistan PRRO 10233.0, with a value of USD 337.5 million, and a total food requirement of 618, 989 tons of commodities, has not received any funding yet. Several contributions to this newly approved operation are under negotiation. A donation amounting to USD 735,300 will be used to procure wheat in the region.

2) Pakistan

(a) On 3 March, WFP voiced its concern over the precarious pipeline situation of Emergency Operation (EMOP) 10228 in a meeting with UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Ruud Lubbers. WFP emphasized the urgent need for new pledges from the donor community, either in cash or in kind, to enable WFP to continue support to an estimated 230,000 Afghan refugees at new camps in the North West Frontier Province and Balochistan Province. Recent cash contributions have enabled WFP to purchase urgently needed food, particularly wheat and vegetable oil. However, these purchases will only last until April and May. As of 4 March, only 30 percent of WFP's requirements under EMOP 10228 have been met.

G) Eastern Europe Region: (1) North Caucasus

1) North Caucasus

(a) As a result of the upcoming referendum on the draft constitution and election laws of the Republic, an increased number of security incidents were reported in central and southern Chechnya. During the month of February, the number of displaced Chechens in Ingushetia decreased from 94,960 to 93,437. UNHCR and the Chechen IDP Committee reported that the number of IDPs returning to Chechnya remained at a relatively high level. In March the Government is expected to begin paying compensation to residents of Chechnya, whose property and homes have been damaged or destroyed during military operations in the republic. In Chechnya and Ingushetia market prices for wheat flour increased by 10 to15 percent.

(b) WFP continued to provide regular food assistance to 134,700 persons among the most vulnerable households in central Chechnya, who have been heavily affected by the conflict. WFP beneficiaries also included 3,600 needy residents in temporary accommodation centres and 43,750 school children . Schools reported an increase in children's attendance rate due to the WFP school-feeding programme. Approximately 5,000 food rations were distributed through WFPs food-for-work activities. WFP conducted training in Nazran for monitors of "Vesta" (a local NGO) in order to carry out a baseline school-feeding survey in Chechnya. The purpose of the survey is to assess the impact of the WFP school feeding programme on children's attendance and to provide data for a possible expansion of the programme into other regions.

H) Latin America and Caribbean Region: (1) El Salvador

1) El Salvador

(a) Significant political violence was reported, including numerous deaths, in the run up to elections, scheduled for 18 March. UN security levels were heightened in the departments of Sonsonate, La Paz, Usulutan, St. Miguel and parts of Libertad.

(b) WFP completed the livelihood survey in the Departments affected by the coffee crisis. This study will form a basis for interventions in the coming months under PRRO 10212.0 ("Targeted Food Assistance for People Affected by Shocks and for the Recovery of Livelihoods"). Activities will focus on food-for-training that aims to increase capacities amongst beneficiaries to generate alternative income and increase knowledge on hygiene/health and other identified training needs. A full report is expected in the coming week.

(c) WFP, in collaboration with Catholic Relief Services (CRS), completed the last part of WFP food distributions planned under Protracted Relief and Recovery Operation (PRRO) 6089, completing the final phase of the project.

Note: All tonnage figures in this report refer to metric tons.

(End WFP Emergency Report No 10).