This report includes:
(A) Middle East, Central Asia and Eastern Europe: (1) Afghanistan, (2) Iran, (3) Pakistan, (4) Russian Federation
(B) East and Central Africa: (1) Burundi, (2) DR Congo, (3) Djibouti, (4) Eritrea, (5) Ethiopia, (6) Rwanda, (7) Somalia, (8) Sudan, (9) Uganda
(C) West Africa: (1) Chad, (2) Guinea, (3) Sierra Leone, (4) Côte d'Ivoire, (5) Liberia
(D) Southern Africa: (1) Regional, (2) Angola, (3) Lesotho, (4) Madagascar, (5) Malawi, (6) Mozambique, (7) Namibia, (8) Swaziland, (9) Zambia, (10) Zimbabwe
(E) Asia: (1) DPR Korea, (2) Indonesia
(F) Latin America and the Caribbean: (1) Haiti, (2), Honduras, (3) Colombia, (4) Ecuador, (5) Nicaragua
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 Brenda.Barton@wfp.org, telephone +39 06 6513 2602. The address of WFP is Via Cesare Giulio Viola 68, Parco dei Medici, 00148 Rome, Italy.
A) Middle East, Central Asia and Eastern Europe: (1) Afghanistan, (2) Iran, (3) Pakistan, (4) Russian Federation
(a) The security situation remained relatively calm throughout most of the country. In the north, United Nations missions were suspended to Gurziwan and Darzab districts in Faryab province due to ongoing factional fighting and tension. In the east, all missions were temporarily suspended to Mihtarlam city in Laghman province. In the south, movement of UN staff members is restricted with road missions being approved only with armed escorts, due to increasing tension in the area. In the Ghor province of the west, due to bad road condition and a high water level, UN missions were cleared only to Chaghcharan district. In the central region, missions to Kunar, Nangarhar and Nuristan provinces were suspended.
(b) During the reporting period, some 441,240 beneficiaries received 2,621 tons of food
(c) Last week, a WFP team assessed recent earthquake damage to Sari Qul and Yaftal villages in Fayz Abad province and reported that 10 out of 22 households were evacuated to adjacent villages. Remaining villagers were drinking water from a muddy river nearby. WFP is providing food aid to the victims.
(d) On 15 April, WFP and IOM signed an agreement to implement the "Return and Reintegration of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs)" project, aimed at ensuring that returning IDPs are provided with basic returnee food packages. WFP will support community based-activities primarily in food insecure areas through food for work (FFW), providing priority employment to returning IDPs who meet the criteria of vulnerability. Under the project, an estimated 9,000 IDP families will receive 1,350 tons of food by 31 March 2005.
(e) During the same week, the Ministry of Health (MoH) and WFP signed an agreement, outlining continuous cooperation between the two until March 2005, to assist the needy in the country through institutional and supplementary feeding programmes. The programmes will reach, respectively, an estimated 10,000 malnourished children and expectant or nursing women and 15,000 hospital patients, orphans and street children. In addition, the Ministry identified combating tuberculosis as one of its priorities, and consequently some 27,400 tuberculosis patients will receive food aid. WFP will continue to support the rehabilitation of silos in Kabul and in other major cities. Capacity development in the Ministry will be enhanced with experts seconded from WFP to train Ministry staff in the management of food, ware houses and programmes.
(f) On 18 April, WFP organized a workshop to train staff of 24 NGOs in Hirat on the formulation of project proposals and on results based reporting, both with regard to food aid. Furthermore, a 12-day capacity building workshop for the Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development staff members continued this week in Kandahar. Through the workshop, 34 Ministry participants are being trained on writing reports, appraising proposals, and on monitoring and assessing the impact of projects.
(a) From the beginning of the repatriation process in April 2002, some 417.900 Afghan refugees have repatriated with UNHCR assistance and almost 270.405 spontaneously. With regard to Iraqi returnees, a total number of 5890 has been repatriated with 21 UNHCR convoys. WFP Country Office on 25 April will begin a monitoring exercise of all camps.
(b) A recent monitoring exercise for the Literacy and Skills Training (LST) classes revealed that the enrollment rate in these classes has increased considerably due to the positive effect of food assistance that WFP Zahedan provided under PRRO 10213, Food Assistance and Support to Education of Afghan and Iraqi Refugees. Food commodities allocated to Literacy Movement Organization (LMO) classes for March have been distributed in April. WFP is examining the possibility to extend its food assistance to girls and women participating in LST classes organized by the Ministry of Education (MOE) and LMO in Khorassan province.
(c) PRRO 10213 still has a shortfall of 48.5%, equivalent to USD 7,216,826.
(a) With the visit of UN High Commissioner for Refugees to Pakistan, there are indications that UNHCR and the Government are negotiating the closure of assisted camps in the tribal areas as well as possible assistance for refugees to repatriate.
(b) For the month of April, no repatriation was reported from the new camps. The first group of 200 identified refugees for relocation from Dara II Chaman camp to Muslim Bagh, Malgagi camp, could not be relocated as security clearance was not granted due to unavailability of levies force, now that operations for destroying poppy cultivation are taking place in Killa Abdullah District. Dispatches are ongoing to Chaman camps for due rations for the month of March.
(c) In North West Frontier Province special operations to deliver food to Kurram Agency were completed in Bassu, Asgharo 1 & 2 and Bagzai camps. The camps remained inaccessible due to prevailing security situation. Therefore, private carriage contractors were deployed instead of the WFP trucking fleet. Implementing partners deployed their national staff to carry out the distribution.
(d) Shelter Now International, WFP's implementing partner in one of the camps in NWFP, may withdraw from food distribution activities due to management changes. An alternate implementing partner is being considered.
(e) Emergency Operation (EMOP) 10228.0, providing support to refugees, is facing a pipeline breakdown in July. Donor contributions are required to procure 8,328 tons of wheat, 742 tons of pulses, 197 tons of vegetable oil and 112 tons of salt.
4) Russian Federation
(a) During the first fortnight of April, the security situation in Chechnya and Ingushetia remained tense. The humanitarian community celebrated the release of a MSF-Switzerland representative, who had been kidnapped in Dagestan in August 2002.
(b) According to data of UNHCR and the Danish Refugee Council (DRC), some 659 IDPs returned to Chechnya from Ingushetia during the first fortnight of April, reducing the number of Chechen IDPs living in camps in Ingushetia to 1,910. Camp 'Sputnik' was officially closed on 2 April, and up to now some 70% of its residents left to Chechnya, whereas 30% stayed in Ingushetia. Even though no official dates were given for the closure of Satsita, the last tent camp in Ingushetia, the Federal Migration Service (the FMS) gave its IDP population two weeks to decide whether they will leave for Chechnya or stay in Ingushetia.
(c) During the period from 1 to 15 April, about 50,480 vulnerable persons received nearly 403 tons of WFP supplied food aid through relief distributions. Of this relief food aid, about 86 tons were distributed to 7,380 Chechen IDPs in Ingushetia and 317 tons to 43,100 'very poor' and 'poor' household members in Grozny city, Grozny Rural, Achkhoi-Martan and Sunzha districts of Chechnya. The food allocated for school feeding in Chechnya for April (a total of some 580 tons), was delivered by implementing partners by the end of March to 290 pre- and primary schools representing over 74,000 children in 11 districts of Chechnya.
(d) For the first two weeks of April, some 3,385 persons (16,935 beneficiaries), received a total of 412 tons of food commodities as a payment for their work implemented in March. During the course of April, about 3,300 persons (16,500 beneficiaries) are participating in food-for-work activities, such as road reconstruction, kindergarten, school and hospital rehabilitation and street cleaning.
(e) On 14 April, a joint WFP/UNICEF mission was undertaken to Kurchaloi. Along with visiting 4 schools in the region to monitor the school feeding programme, the mission held meetings with local administrations, who expressed their interest in cooperating with WFP to reconstruct public facilities through expansion of food-for-work activities.
B) East and Central Africa: (1) Burundi, (2) DR Congo, (3) Djibouti, (4) Eritrea, (5) Ethiopia, (6) Rwanda, (7) Somalia (8) Sudan, (9) Uganda
(a) Last week, insecurity continued in two communes of Bujumbura Rural, Kabezi and Mutambu. Confrontations between the Front for National Liberation (FNL) and the national army resumed, resulting in human casualties and displacement of estimated 40,000 persons. WFP is assisting the displaced persons, who have been repeatedly displaced by the fighting in the communes of Mutambu, Muhuta and Kabezi with emergency food rations.
(b) From 12 to 18 April 2004, WFP has distributed a total of 1,457 tons of food aid to 165,522 beneficiaries through different programme activities. Most distributions have been carried out without pulses due to a shortage of this commodity. While pulses deliveries are now improving, pipeline breaks for vegetable oil and Corn-Soya-Blend (CSB) are anticipated in early May. This could hamper the capacity to implement nutritional activities throughout the country. Loan opportunities are being sought.
2) DR Congo
(a) This week the Government resumed the voluntary repatriation of the IDPs of the Pool region who, for the last two years, took refuge in several sites in the outskirts of Brazzaville and have received regular food assistance from WFP all along. The repatriation exercise was launched on 24 January 2004 with the voluntary repatriation of 253 IDPs.
(b) In between these two official operations, however a greater number of the IDPs had spontaneously left the camps and returned to their villages of origin in the Pool Region. This is as a consequence of the peace agreement that was signed on 17 March 2003, which put an end to the several civil wars that the country went through since most of the 1990s. During the repatriation exercise, the IDPs were provided with food packages by WFP, farming tools and seeds by FAO and the government.
(c) However, the conditions of living and reconstruction in the Pool region remain precarious, because of insecurity in most parts of the region. Delays in implementing the peace agreement leave most of the unemployed youths with their arms, which is a continuous threat to peace and security. The region continues to be Phase IV in the UN security plan and not much is being done in terms of rehabilitation and reconstruction.
(a) On 17 April, Djibouti authorities launched an appeal for emergency intervention in favour of 100,000 persons affected by the recent floods. The five UN agencies operating in Djibouti, namely UNDP, UNHCR, UNICEF, WFP, and WHO, have been asked to provide food and non-food items to the affected persons. Food assistance has been requested for a period of six months, comprising 6,000 tons of rice, 3000 tons of oil, 3,000 tons of sugar and 1,200 of CSB. WFP together with the Ministry of Interior and the UN Country Team is reviewing the Government's appeal based on the actual number of people in need and WFP standard food rations.
(b) To date, homeless families are still sheltered in schools and administrative facilities of Djibouti town where assistance (food, water and non-food items), is provided to them by various stakeholders. The UN approach to support the flood victims is to canalise all available assistance from UN agencies through the UN Country Team. WFP agreed with this approach which would avoid food distributions in the city since the reinstallation / resettlement of flood victims will soon take place. Authorities are working on the relocation of the homeless population in the highlands about 20 km from the Ambouli wadi.
(c) The fifth convoy of the second voluntary repatriation phase of refugees left Djibouti on 20 April 2004 to various destinations in North Somalia ("Somaliland"). In total, 122 families of 596 refugees (62 families/281 persons from Ali Addeh camp and 60 families/315 persons from Holl Holl camp), have been repatriated to various destinations, namely Guerissa, Garsa Dadar, Harirrad and Gar Garai. WFP has provided nine-month food packages to all refugees. The next convoy is scheduled to leave Djibouti in early May.
(a) Last week, WFP participated in a tripartite meeting between UNHCR and the Governments of Sudan and Eritrea that agreed to extend the voluntary repatriation of Eritreans from Sudan until 31 December 2004 and the Refugee Status Determination (RSD) until October 2004.
(b) On 16 April 2004, a stakeholder workshop to review the National Nutritional Surveillance System (N-NSS) was organized by the Ministry of Health. WFP, UNICEF and various NGOs have supported the establishment of the N-NSS in order to provide timely and accurate data for the planning and implementation of nutrition-related interventions, in particular within the current humanitarian context. To date, N-NSS surveys have been conducted in all six regions of the country; a second round is planned for May-June 2004.
(a) Further discussions have been held between donors, government and UN agencies on humanitarian needs in some sites of the voluntary resettlement programme in the west of the country. While there are many examples of well-organized resettlement sites, some sites, especially those receiving whole families instead of just male heads of households, have been reported by the Oromiya regional government as urgently in need of blended food to supplement current rations of cereals, in order to prevent deterioration in the nutritional status of children. Health kits and assistance with water supply improvements are also needed. The federal government has now designated the Disaster Prevention and Preparedness Commission (DPPC) to coordinate humanitarian response for resettlement areas.
(b) DPPC is currently leading an assessment of immediate humanitarian needs in resettlement sites in Oromiya region in the west and south of the country, and to the Amhara region in the north. This is a follow-up to last month's assessment by UN/donor/World Bank resettlement working group teams. WFP monitors are participating in the four teams. Several donors have agreed that their donations of blended food for the drought operations can be sent to the four resettlement sites currently most in need of supplementary food for children and pregnant and lactating women without delaying until the assessment is completed. WFP and DPPC have therefore sent 194 tons of blended food donated through WFP, to cover one month's needs of approximately 45,000 beneficiaries at four locations in Illubabor and West Wellega zones of Oromiya Region. The DPPC has previously sent 50 tons of its own stocks of blended food to Chawaka site, Illubabor zone. Once the results of the DPPC-led assessment are known, a formal nutritional survey will take place in any area where this is required. Donors have expressed willingness to consider pledges to cover further humanitarian requirements, based on the DPPC assessment. WFP is also discussing storage needs in resettlement areas with the DPPC. Many sites will be cut off during the main rainy season, two months from now, and preparations for storage of pre-positioned stocks of food are required.
(c) A separate mission made up of several teams is also being fielded by DPPC with the participation of WFP and NGOs, to carry out an assessment of the short season "Belg" rains (currently falling in many parts of the country) and the state of "Belg" crops expected to be harvested in July. This annual "mid-Belg" assessment will also be looking at preparations for the main agricultural season, the Meher season.
(a) While near normal rainfall is expected across Rwanda, dry conditions are expected in the southern regions by mid-May 2004, namely the drought-affected districts of Bugesera region, Butare provinces, Gikongoro, Mirenge and Rusumo districts. The drought and foreseen dry weather conditions may present continuing challenges for farmers who planted late this year. WFP will continue to monitor the situation closely, while simultaneously implementing accelerated food-for-work projects, school feeding and HIV/AIDS projects.
(b) Family rations to 1,944 households under therapeutic/supplementary programmes at six nutrition centres continue to be distributed in Bugesera under a three-month assistance plan. The revised ration is expected to increase the recovery process for malnourished people, as they will no longer have to share rations with members of their family.
(a) All of Somalia is now under UN security phases IV or V, with the recent change to phase IV in the Northwest ("Somaliland"), where attacks on international aid workers by reportedly Muslim militants led to the death of four expatriates in the last six months. The town of Kismayo in south Somalia, as well as a 20-kilometre corridor along the border with Kenya have been raised to security phase V. Mogadishu was already under phase V.
(b) Although limited "Gu" seasonal rains have just started easing the earlier severe shortage of water, most of the drought-affected areas in north and central Somalia still require assistance at least through June 2004, and probably longer.
(c) Distribution in Sool region resumed, but insecurity is still complicating access to the area. After an interruption of more than three months due to the prevailing insecurity situation, WFP restarts emergency relief distributions in this part of drought stricken North Somalia, targeting 20,000 vulnerable beneficiaries who are mostly women and children. This time the operation proceeds from the Northeast - Puntland side, as the access from the Northwest ("Somaliland") side is still blocked. The border conflict between Somaliland and Puntland authorities still remains high on the agenda of both administrations, which are maintaining a strong military presence in the disputed frontline since December 2003. Another 50,000 beneficiaries are targeted in bordering Sanag region.
(d) Further to reports by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF)-Holland of a rapid increase in their therapeutic feeding programme, a WFP assessment mission is on the ground looking into the emergency food needs of the marginalized Bantu ethnic group living in the Lower Juba area in south Somalia. This group experienced cumulative crop failures last year and their access to food and alternative labour opportunities are severely limited due to the continuing insecurity. Moreover, cereal prices on the market are abnormally high due to low supply, which is caused by increased militia checkpoints and inaccessible roads.
(a) There was an improvement in the general security situation in Darfur Region during the reporting period, which is attributed to the 45-day cease-fire agreement between the Government of Sudan, the Sudanese Liberation Army (SLA) and the Sudanese Justice and Equality Movement (JEM). The number of reported security incidents decreased relatively, particularly in South Darfur, as compared to last week. However, human rights violations by the Janjaweed continued to be reported.
(b) As access continued to improve, WFP intensified implementation and forward planning to respond fittingly to the needs of IDPs in light of the cease-fire. In preparation for the upcoming rainy season, WFP Logistics have identified the areas of Kuttum, Kebabiya, Morni and Zalingey as the strategic Final Destination Points (FDPs) to preposition food stocks prior to the expected rains and also to ensure effective food allocation to IDPs and local populations during times of increased insecurity. Propositioning started in March and is continuing, with food being moved by air and land.
(c) Since January 2004, WFP has distributed 9,666 tons of assorted food commodities to 543,709 war-affected beneficiaries in Darfur region as follows: 2,581 tons to 211,314 beneficiaries in West Darfur; 6,123 tons to 276,814 beneficiaries in North Darfur; and 962 tons to 55,581 beneficiaries in South Darfur.
(a) In an address to the nation on 14 April 2004, President Yoweri Museveni offered to hold dialogue with the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) rebels, provided they "are willing to talk and assemble in certain areas of southern Sudan". Mr Museveni added that he would order a ceasefire and offer the rebels safe passage.
(b) The Acholi Religious Leaders Peace Initiative (ARLPI) who advocate for a negotiated settlement of the 18-year conflict in northern Uganda, also welcomed the President's offer, calling it "a good gesture". Further, the UN Secretary General issued a statement welcoming President Museveni's offer to engage in dialogue with the LRA. In a related development, the International Crisis Group issued a report on the conflict in northern Uganda, recommending a combined military and negotiated approach. "Most discussion of how to end the conflict centres on the false dichotomy of a military versus a negotiated solution," the report said.
(c) Increased Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) rebel activity was reported over the period under review in the northern Acholi and Lango sub-regions and the northwestern West Nile region. Heightened rebel activity in Gulu, Kitgum, Pader, Lira and Adjumani districts has resulted in further displacement. In one incident in Adjumani, LRA rebels ambushed a convoy on the Gulu-Adjumani road on 15 April 2004. Fifteen civilians were reported killed in the incident, while one passenger bus, two commercial trucks and one car were burned.
(d) WFP food distribution continues to reach over 1.6 million displaced persons, 160,000 refugees and other vulnerable persons. During the period 12 to 17 April 2004, 2,280 tons of WFP relief food assistance reached 213,852 persons including IDPs sheltering in camps in Gulu, Kitgum and Pader districts in the northern Acholi sub-regions; eastern Teso region; school children and vulnerable persons at feeding centres.
(e) WFP faces a shortfall of 117,688 tons of food commodities (85,854 tons cereals, 7,049 tons pulses, 21,049 tons CSB, and 3,735 tons vegetable oil) from April through December 2004. WFP urgently requires USD 61,668,495 in contributions to continue providing relief assistance to over 1.6 million people through December 2004.
C) West Africa Region: (1) Chad (2) Guinea (3) Sierra Leone (4) Côte d'Ivoire (5) Liberia
(a) UNHCR relocation exercise of Sudanese refugees from the border areas to more secured camps has intensified. To date 32,103 refugees are settled in five camps (6,920 in Farchana, 6,575 in Touloum, 6,831 in Kouloungo, 5,933 in Iridimi and 5,781 in Goz Amer). Last week around 6,500 refugees were moved into camps. Because the rains generally arrive earlier in the south, UNHCR is focusing its transfers on the southern stretch of the border - refugees are being moved to Goz Amer camps. Based on the present rate of arrival, it is expected that by mid-May the caseload will reach 60,000 refugees. Spontaneous arrivals are expected to continue, which underscores the need for new sites as current camps would not have sufficient water.
(b) In light of the recently signed cease-fire agreement, a Sudanese government mission led by the Humanitarian ministry and Interior ministry visited Farchana camp on 14 April and humanitarian actors in the region.
(c) WFP and FAO, through NGO Premières Urgences (French NGO) are planning to distribute 1 MT of food as part of FFW activities /Seeds protection rations to host population in Tissi and Dagessa. This will help to cater needs of local population during the lean season. To date, 31,000 beneficiaries amongst refugees and local population living along the border have been identified and targeted for FFW activities.
(d) WFP through COOPI (Italian NGO) is implementing a supplementary feeding programme in Goz Amer 1 & 2 camps to provide food rations to moderately malnourished children during 4 weeks while severely malnourished children will receive food rations for 8 weeks; around 300 moderate and 60 severely malnourished children were registered.
(e) During the reporting period, WFP distributed a total of 215 MT of assorted commodities to refugees in camps. Cumulative distributions in camps amount to 1,252 MT.
(f) The vaccination campaign against meningitis launched by MSF-Belgium is undergoing and more than 36,000 persons were reached in Tine, Touloum, Iridimi and Iriba.
(g) Pre-positionning of food for the forecasted 100,000 refugees and host population continues and current stocks in Abéché are 3,295 MT. As part of its strategy to preposition food, WFP will directly dispatch purchased commodities in Cameroon to Abéché.
(a) During the reporting period 2,591 MT of various food commodities were distributed to 91,272 people.
(b) The security situation was reported as generally calm throughout the country.
(c) UNHCR statistics as of 15 April indicate that 104,291 refugees reside in the seven refugee camps in Guinea (78,544 in the N'Zerekore region). Four convoys transported 990 Sierra Leonean refugees from the camps in Kissidougou to Sierra Leone, bringing the total number of repatriated this year to 8,859 (53,021 since the beginning of repatriation process in October 2003). Repatriation of Sierra Leonean refugees continues until 30 June. The last two monthly rations (for May and June) in Kissidougou will be distributed at the same time (starting from 26 April), in order to support the repatriation process.
(d) As part of the preparation for the 2005 PRRO, WFP completed a survey on household food security in the seven refugee camps in cooperation with UNHCR on 14 April. A total of 930 households were interviewed and two focus groups were organized in every camp. Findings will be reported in May 2004.
(e) Pipeline breaks of salt and vegetable oil are anticipated in August 2004. 63 MT of salt and 386 MT of oil are needed to meet requirements for the reminder of the year. Delivery needs to take place by early July due to transport difficulties during the rainy season.
3) Sierra Leone
(a) During the reporting period, WFP distributed a total of 1,150 MT of assorted food commodities to 70,719 beneficiaries. The security situation in the country remained calm during the reporting period.
(b) WFP in collaboration with UNHCR conducted a Post Distribution monitoring (PDM) in all refugee camps. The focus of the PDM was to get feed back from the implementing partners on the food distribution in March and also to agree on common strategies of improving the distribution of food commodities to beneficiaries.
(c) Monthly pre-positioning of food to refugee camps commenced during the reporting period.
(d) For the PRRO, pipeline breaks of sugar are expected from April to December, of vegetable oil in April and from October to December, and pulses from September to December.
4) Côte d'Ivoire
(a) During the reporting period (14-20 April), 175 MT of various food commodities were distributed to about 19,123 people.
(b) The WFP/FAO emergency agriculture project has started and will target 8,800 families around the country. This project supplies seeds, tools and a seed protection ration to support the start of the agricultural season.
(c) Returnee rations were provided to beneficiaries in Zouan Hounien, Bin Houye and Man as well as food for work rations in partnership with ICRC. Distributions were made to schools in villages around Daloa for 2,449 children as well as food for work rations for 20 canteen workers and their families. Deliveries were made to school canteens in Bouake, Sakassou and Katiola this week in favor of 4,918 students and 76 volunteer canteen workers and their families.
(a) Disarmament of combatants of various warring factions and forces of the former Government began on April 15 with the LURD fighters in Gbarnga, Bong County. This will be followed by Buchanan on the 20 April, Tubmanburg on 25 and VOA on 28 April. So far the disarmament and demobilization process have been smooth and no major incidents have been reported.
(b) During the week 15-21 April, a total of 74,181 beneficiaries received food rations totaling 1,232 MT.
(c) Distribution of food ration to IDPs was completed in Ricks, Morris Farm, Plumkor, Mount Barclay and Soul Clinic. Catholic Compound and Freeman Reserve, two of the nine recently approved camps were also served. Food distribution in Conneh and Unification Town camps was suspended as a precautionary measure because of the resumption of the disarmament and demobilization programme. Distribution resumed in Conneh camp on 19 April 2004. All camps in Totota have been completed. Distribution of food to IDPs in Salala and Tumutu which commenced on 12 April 2004 but was suspended on 14 April 2004 to observe the trend of the DDRR process, restarted on 19 April 2004.
D) Southern Africa: (1) Regional, (2) Angola, (3) Lesotho, (4) Madagascar, (5) Malawi, (6) Mozambique, (7) Namibia, (8) Swaziland, (9) Zambia, (10) Zimbabwe
(a) The FAO/WFP Crop and Food Supply Assessment Missions (CFSAM) and national Vulnerability Assessments will take place (April-May) in the most-affected countries in the region: Angola, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Swaziland and Zimbabwe. The assessments will provide more accurate information and will form the basis for future operations in the region.
(a) Due to the severe funding shortfall, WFP will only be able to provide 50 percent rations to returnees (both internally displaced persons and refugees) and Food-for-Work beneficiaries in April and May. These groups make up the vast majority of the 1.9 million beneficiaries. Without additional donations, WFP will have no cereal to distribute after May and only 50 percent of other commodities. WFP will continue with a full ration for school feeding but numbers will be limited to 45,000 in two provinces rather than 200,000 allowed for under the Protracted Relief and Recovery Operation (PRRO) for 2004. As a result, in the southern province of Huila, approximately 63,500 beneficiaries in Caluquembe, Chipindo, Matala, Jamba and Chicomba municipalities have been phased out of the program and will not receive WFP assistance from April 2004 distributions. WFP urgently requests new contributions, particularly cash, in order to address this major disruption to the PRRO.
(b) In Benguela in the west, the road between Santa Ana and Casseque, Ganda Municipality has been re-opened for humanitarian activities. The road was closed for more than six months due to mine presence but was demined by Halo Trust last month. The reopening will allow access to thousands of returned populations in Casseque and around Chicuma.
(a) From 14 - 20 April, WFP distributed 719 tons of food to 114001 households, representing 50,973 beneficiaries.
(a) WFP Madagascar has met with the government, FAO and NGOs regarding the joint assessment mission on the negative impact by cyclone Gafilo on food security and the agricultural sector. FAO and WFP will commence field visits on 26 April.
(b) WFP, alongside implementing partners (Catholic Relief Services and CARE), is assisting approximately 35,000 cyclone-affected people in Antsalaha and Maroentsetra, northeastern Madagascar, and approximately 67,500 in the southern regions of Majunga, Antsohiyi, Mampikoni, Ambato Boeni, Morondava and Morombe
(a) WFP Malawi will distribute double rations in April, ahead of the election set to take place May 18. Therefore, in the month of May no food distribution is planned under emergency operation 10290.
(b) From 14 - 21 April, WFP and implementing partners distributed 2,095 tons of food.
(a) Central Mozambique received no rainfall this week. Late and erratic rainfall has led to agricultural problems in parts of southern Mozambique. Food distribution had to be temporarily stopped in remote localities of Mawayela and Macavelane (Panda district, Inhambane province in the south) where implementing partner Agency for Cooperation and Research in Development (ACORD) had serious difficulties in reaching food distribution points due to bad road conditions caused by rainstorms that hit the district.
(b) From 13 - 19 April, WFP and implementing partners distributed 2,142 tons of food.
(a) Findings by the Vulnerable Assessment Committee (VAC) regarding the rapid assessment on the floods in the Caprivi region, northeastern Namibia, conclude that approximately 20,000 people in rural Kabbe and Katima have been adversely affected by the flooding of the Zambezi River. The assessment, which was carried out by WFP, UNICEF, the Red Cross and government counterparts, emphasized the need to evacuate those affected to safer locations and that, while the health situation is under control, access to drinking water is of concern. Most of the agricultural fields are submerged and the majority of crops were washed away. Immediate food and non-food distributions to the affected population were recommended, with plans to continue until next year's harvest in April/May. WFP intends to provide food assistance to the flood affected people in Caprivi region as part of the approved emergency operation EMOP 10334. However, apart from one multilateral input, no contributions have been received for this EMOP.
(b) Emergency Management Officials at Katima reported that the Zambezi water level reached 6.62 meters as a second flood wave hit Caprivi during the week. Although the water level has dropped from the high of 7.04 meters recorded at the beginning of April, this is still approximately 2 meters higher than this time last year when WFP Namibia provided three months food rations (June - August 2003) to 12,000 affected people in Caprivi region. Officials from the Hydrology Department in Caprivi have said that it will take one month before the waters start to subside substantially in the eastern floodplains.
(c) The pipeline for approximately 14,000 refugees in Namibia will experience shortfalls from May onwards, with a complete break from June and onwards. Urgent funding is required in order to avoid the foreseen disruption. The refugee population in Namibia depends entirely on WFP assistance.
(d) Following the tripartite commission meeting (governments of Angola, Namibia and UNHCR) in Luanda on 01 April 2004, UNHCR Namibia has confirmed that the repatriation of Angolan refugees will resume on 17 May.
(a) During the reporting week, higher than expected levels of rainfall have been reported in WFP operational areas, with the Lubombo Plateau and the Dry Middleveld recording above-average rainfall. However the latest agro-meteorological update indicates that the rains are delaying the drying process of the maize crop, which needs to happen before it can be harvested. According to WFP Food Aid Monitors, households at KaPhunga in the Dry Middleveld who have started harvesting maize crops are experiencing difficulty due to continued rainfall.
(a) Due to the significant shortfall in commodities currently being experienced in Angola, a meeting was held on 22 April between representatives of the government, UN High Commission for Refugees, International Organisation for Migration and WFP to revise the recommendations of the Tripartite Commission for the Voluntary Repatriation of Angolan Refugees from Zambia. A meeting will be held next week to brief the government and the International Community on the impact of food shortages in Angola. The repatriation of approximately 40,000 Angolan refugees in 2004 is planned to commence 8 - 15 June.
(b) The supply of maize on the market continues to be good and has helped to keep the price of grain and maize meal relatively low for this time of the year. In addition, as crops start to reach full maturity, the food security situation has improved in rural areas.
(c) An assessment mission was carried out in Chadiza district, eastern province, to select the ten new schools to be included in the expansion of the school feeding programme under the country programme. With this expansion, the school feeding programme will reach 24,000 children every month.
(a) WFP and implementing partners distributed 13,217 mt of food to 1,009,795 beneficiaries during the reporting period. With the onset of the harvesting period, WFP is preparing to reduce its beneficiary figures for May and June.
(b) Harvesting, which started at the beginning of April, has resulted in improved household food security countrywide. However, in most areas assessed by WFP and implementing partners, the harvest is not expected to cover the full year.
(c) According to reports from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, the monthly inflation for March went down from 603 percent in February to 583 percent last month. However, prices of basic food commodities have remained unchanged and beyond the reach of many.
E) Asia: (1) DPR Korea, (2) Indonesia
1) DPR Korea
(a) Under EMOP 10141.02, with the recent arrival of maize and wheat, all but 600,000 core beneficiaries are receiving their WFP cereal rations in April. However, unless additional contributions are pledged immediately, distribution cuts will again affect more than one million core beneficiaries from May to September. By October, the number would rise to 3.8 million. Moreover, loans received to help repair the cereals pipeline break still need to be reimbursed from future contributions.
(b) In April and May, WFP is also providing cereal rations to two categories of beneficiaries on the east coast that have not received food for the past months due to pipeline breaks: 280,000 elderly and 250,000 most food insecure urban workers and their families.
(c) New pledges of about 123,000 mt of mixed commodities (mostly cereals) are urgently required to cover needs over the next six months.
(a) During March approximately 1, 59 million beneficiaries under the various PRROs activities received WFP assistance amounting to some 7, 374 MT of food.
(b) The campaign for the April 5th legislative elections kicked off on 11 March. Despite concerns of unrest in relation with the polls the campaign has so far proven remarkably peaceful with only a few reported security incidents. However, more than 7, 500 national police officers have been dispatched to some of the most sensitive areas of the country.
(c) The dengue fever outbreak, which by end March has claimed 558 lives and infected 47, 617 people, is reportedly in decline.
(d) In March WFP received a total of 6, 598 MT of rice. As a result of the Government imposed ban on rice imports during the harvest period (January through June 2004), WFP has not been allowed to de-stuff this food which is currently stored in containers in the ports of Jakarta and Surabaya. Despite numerous efforts by WFP, clarification from Government whether WFP humanitarian cargo is exempt from the ban and the responsibility for possible demurrage and damages is pending.
F) Latin America and the Caribbean: (1) Haiti, (2), Honduras, (3) Colombia, (4) Ecuador, (5) Nicaragua
(a) From 13 to 15 April, WFP's Executive Director, Mr. James T. Morris, visited Haiti accompanied by the Regional Director, Ms. Zoraida Mesa. During the mission, he visited WFP-assisted projects, highlighted the need for further donor support and pointed out the fruitful UN coordination mechanisms in place.
(b) During their visit to Haiti, the French Defense Minister, the United States Congressman, and Senator expressed their support of the transitional government and their willingness to assist in the reestablishment of normal functioning of State institutions.
(c) The security environment remains uncertain and volatile. Curfew is still in force from midnight to 5:00 a.m. Except for the South, most areas in the country continue under the UN security phase III. The city of Gonaives remains in security phase IV. Port-au-Prince is still in phase III and dependents of UN staff members remain in Dominican Republic.
(d) Despite the presence of illegal armed groups in certain areas, the security assessment mission carried out last week on the routes between Port-au-Prince- Gonaives- Bombardopolis- Mole Saint Nicolas- Port de Paix-Gonaives reported no incidents and relative normality along these main roads. However, criminal activities such as vandalism, kidnapping and banditry are increasing, especially in the areas of Port-au-Prince and Cap-Haitian.
(e) After weeks of negotiations with rebel groups in Cap-Haitian, the national police and the French Contingent of the Multinational Interim Forces (MIF) are controlling the entire city including the port. However, the rebel group - Armee du Nord - is still present in the city.
(f) Government agencies in Haiti are virtually paralyzed, unable to provide basic services like electricity and garbage collection. Haiti's Economy Minister said that estimated direct and indirect cost of the political turbulence -- including damage to public buildings and lost jobs -- was, according to very conservative estimates, at least USD 600 million.
(g) After five months of prolonged dry conditions, rains were reported in Bombardopolis, Mare Rouge, Damé and Grande Source. According to WFP monitoring reports, prices in the markets of Bombardopolis and Jean-Rabel continue to increase for rice (which makes up for more than 50% of daily energy intake in most households), but remain constant or have slightly decreased for some products, such as maize and lentils. However, price comparisons between markets in the North West show important differences and higher prices in the markets of Baie-de-Henne and Bombardopolis compared to Jean-Rabel.
(h) The Faith Medical Clinic in Mare Rouge in the North West Department reported a 25% increase in the number of cases of malnutrition of children 6 to11 years old since 2003.
(i) During the reporting week, WFP distributed 528 MT benefiting around 86,000 persons, particularly malnourished children, expectant and nursing mothers, primary school children and orphans.
(j) The warehouse in Bombardopolis received 200 MT of rice and is being dispatched from Port-au-Prince since 2 April. The PRRO in the North West Department requires more than 510 MT of rice to meet the next two week's distribution plans. Another 200 MT was dispatched to Bombardopolis on 19 April from Port-au-Prince.
(k) The WFP Emergency Operation, "Support to Victims of Civil Unrest", received a new contribution from the Government of Japan, which together with the already existing contribution from France, places the shortfall at 85%.
(a) During the reporting period, Honduras was hit by heavy rains and tornado in the Departments of Atlántida and El Paraiso respectively and the Permanent Commission of Contingencies (COPECO) in Honduras has declared yellow alert in the Atlantic coast. Reportedly about 200 houses were damaged by the tornado in the municipalities of Morocelí affecting approximately 1,000 people.
(b) The most affected municipalities by the flood were Arizona, Esparta, La Masica, and San Francisco. The government body for emergencies (COPECO) has declared yellow alert in the Atlantic coast. WFP is monitoring the situation in the area. Contacts have been established with COPECO.
(a) According to Colombian Social Solidarity Network, 55 people from rural areas of Alto Tamaná, province of Choco, have been forced to move out of this area due to clashes between illegal armed groups. At the same time 230 displaced people who were forced to flee their homes some months ago returned to their points of origin last week. These people are from the communities of Callelarga, Villaclaret, Canalete, Ogodó, Las Hamacas and San Jorge. WFP has more than 160 active activities in this province.
(b) A WFP mission to the municipality of Samana, province of Caldas has been scheduled for the upcoming days in order to evaluate the situation of IDPs in this municipality and the required intervention. Last week more than 3000 people were forced to flee their homes due to clashes and threats from illegal armed groups.
(c) According to the Colombian Ministry of Social Protection, the province of Choco has the highest rate of underage pregnant women. Approximately 38% of pregnant women in this department are under 19 years old. WFP delivers food aid to more than 2,300 expectant and nursing mothers in this province.
(d) On 18 April, illegal armed rebels detonated a roadside bomb near the village of Puerto Rico, province of Caquetá, attacking a police convoy. Four officers were killed and 11 were wounded.
(e) In Antioquia province, army troops killed 10 rebels in weekend clashes, in one case thwarting rebel attempts to plant land mines. The heaviest fighting took place in the eastern part of the province, where soldiers attacked a rebel unit as it prepared to sow land mines, killing four of the rebels. WFP assisted approximately 42,000 people in this province.
(f) In the context of the PRRO 10158, Assistance to People Displaced by Violence, during the reported period, WFP distributed 187 metric tons of food in 7 provinces to 32,822 beneficiaries, especially in activities of Food for Work/Food for Training, community kitchens and emergency food aid.
(a) On 15 April, two earthquakes of 4.7 magnitudes in the Richter scale were felt in the Andes. The epicenter was 19 km from Salcedo, a small town in the Province of Cotopaxi, 90 km south of Quito. According to the National Geophysical Institute no damages or victims have been reported.
(b) Low seismic activity reported over the week, presenting 3 to 5 long period events and tremors. On 2 April, some lava activity was reported in the interior of the crater of the Tungurahua volcano.
(c) The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and UNHCR reported that the number of accumulative asylum seekers as of 31 March amounts to 23.584 and only 7.140 has been given refugee status.
(d) The results from the joint mission evaluation WFP-UNHCR, determined that as of April, 4.331 refugees require humanitarian assistance. It is expected that by September 2004, 5.097 people will require UNHCR/WFP assistance. This number will continue to rise as the armed conflict in Colombia becomes more violent.
(e) The UN interagency emergency team and Civil Defense are carrying out prevention activities, such as awareness programs and workshops, in cooperation with local governments from Cotopaxi and Tungurahua Provinces.
(f) The UN team led by WFP is working on updating the Inter-agency Contingency Plan for 2004.
(a) According to the Nicaraguan Institute of Territorial Studies (INETER), during the week of 12 April, tremors were felt in the municipalities of Rosita, Siuna and Bonanza in the Northern Atlantic Region and in Cosigüina, in the Pacific coast. The later had a magnitude of 4.0 on the Richter scale at a depth of 52KM. The National Civil Defense monitored the event closely and no casualties were reported.
(b) During the week of 12 April, WFP visited the Northern Department of Matagalpa and found that the number of children suffering from malnutrition admitted to the local hospital every month is increasing. According to data from the Ministry of Health during the month of February, more than 50 children were admitted, of whom 38% suffered from global light malnutrition, 41% from global moderate malnutrition and 21% from global severe malnutrition compared to 23 children admitted in January.
(c) Poor rural families, especially landless agricultural peasants, are beginning to set up temporary road shelters -"plantones"- in order to protest and request mainly the land tenure. According to press reports, some 2,000 families have already migrated to these shelters. However, the Minister of Agriculture announced that no land will be granted.
(d) Food distributions under PRRO 10212.0 "Targeted food assistance for persons affected by shocks and the recovery of livelihoods" continue. Nearly 80,000 school boys and girls are currently being assisted in flood-prone areas of the Northern Atlantic Region (RAAN) and in the coffee crisis-affected municipality of Matagalpa. Some 626 MT of food are being distributed.
Note: All tonnage figures in this report refer to metric tons
(END WFP Emergency report No. 17, 2004)