This report includes:
A) Middle East and Central Asia : (1) Iraq, (2) Iran, (3) Pakistan, (4) Afghanistan
B) East and Central Africa: (1) Burundi, (2) Ethiopia, (3)Eritrea, (4) Djibouti, (5) Uganda, (6) Sudan, (7) Rwanda, (8) Tanzania (9) Democratic Republic of Congo
C) West Africa: (1) Liberia, (2) Côte d'Ivoire, (3) Sierra Leone
D) Southern Africa: (1) Regional, (2) Angola, (3) Lesotho, (4) Mozambique, (5) Namibia, (6) Swaziland, (7) Tanzania, (8) Zimbabwe
E) Asia: (1) Democratic Republic of Korea
F) Latin America and the Caribbean: (1) Colombia, (2) El Salvador, (3) Ecuador, (4) Guatemala, (5) Nicaragua, (6) Peru
G) Eastern Europe and the Caucasus: (1) Armenia, (2) Georgia
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) Middle East and Central Asia: (1) Iraq, (2) Iran, (3) Pakistan, (4) Afghanistan
(a) After a week of reduced attacks against the Coalition Forces (CF), the situation has lately deteriorated. On August 07, a car bomb in front of the Jordanian Embassy in Baghdad caused 17 deaths and some 50 wounded, including two UN staff. The attack was followed by a series of additional attacks against the CF in the city centre. In the rest of the country, attacks against CF continue at random. In Hilla, where only "essential" staff remains for the time being, the situation stabilised. In Mosul, WFP staff continues to commute to Erbil, but office and accommodation are being set up in the warehouse compound. The UN staff in Basrah was restricted in their movements for the whole day on August 10 due to a large-scale demonstration. The protesters demanded mainly fuel, water and electricity, which has not been sufficiently available in Basrah for some time.
(b) The August Public Distribution System (PDS) distributions are ongoing and proceeding smoothly in all governorates, except in isolated areas where security is affecting timely implementation. The release of food from a cold storage warehouse in Hilla (Babylon) was temporary hampered due to the prevalence of a considerable number of unexploded ordnance (cluster bombs). These are being removed by WFP's partner for mine action, the Swiss Foundation for Mine Action (FSD). Food distributions in Basrah and Thi-Qar have also experienced slight delays due to the prevailing security situation.
(c) A School Feeding Assessment mission is underway, led by WFP, with participation of UNESCO and UNICEF. The Mission is looking into interest and feasibility of carrying out school feeding activities in Iraq. Preliminary findings of the mission show a strong interest in developing school feeding activities, in the context of overall reconstruction of the education sector, and particularly school health.
(d) The Baseline Food Security Assessment conducted by the Vulnerability Analysis and Mapping Unit (VAM) in Baghdad is proceeding smoothly. Data from most governorates has been received. The other component of the Baseline Food Security Assessment, the Coping Strategies Index -- Household Survey is also progressing. The Iraqi Central Statistics Office (CSO) has been entrusted with conducting this survey and the fieldwork will begin shortly.
(e) WFP's logistics operation is continuing smoothly. As at August 12, the dispatch of commodities into Iraq reached some 64,475 Mt. for August. Overall dispatches since the beginning of the operation in April total 1.74 million Mt.
(a) As of 7 August 2003, a total of 510,054 Afghan refugees have repatriated from Dogharoun (northeast) and Milak (southeast) borders since the start of the operation on 9 April 2002. Out of the total 510,054 refugees, 340,306 persons were assisted to repatriate and 169,748 returned to Afghanistan spontaneously. Quarterly monitoring of 28 camps is ongoing. High compliance with targets reported.
(a) Under PRRO 10213.0 and EMOP 10259.0, the remaining quantity of 26,250 Mt. sugar is being stored in Ahwaz and Kermanshah, to be dispatched at a later stage. Some 50,000 Mt. of food have been dispatched to Iraq from Iran from 17 April- 6 July 2003.
(b) Additional funds are needed to provide food as an incentive to promote education among 40,000 Afghan women and girls in Sistan-Baluchestan province.
(c) Under EMOP 10301.0, ''Immediate Response Emergency Operations for Assistance to Flood Affected in Sindh'', WFP Country Director's visit to the most affected areas in the districts of Badin and Thatta confirmed the urgent need for food assistance. Distribution of IRA-approved food will start on August 15, 2003.
(d) In the province of Balochistan, six UN Interagency teams, including WFP, were fielded in the districts of Naseerabad, Jafarabad, Ziarat, Lasbela, Awaran, Khuzdar, Bolan Jhal Magsi and Sibi to carry out a preliminary rapid assessment in the heaviest rain and flood affected areas. The assessments estimate that some 35,000 households or 260,700 people have been affected by floods in the province. There are heavy losses of agriculture land and crops, as well as livestock. In some areas people have limited access to drinking water. Presently there is no immediate requirement for food aid, the majority of the affected people belonging to middle class farmers. However where needed, the Government has distributed food and tents. Lacking means of communication with the affected villages are considered a major problem.
(e) Under EMOP 10228- Assistance to Afghan refugees, in the North West Frontier Province (NWFP), food distribution for the month of August was completed in eight camps located in tribal areas to some 42,000 beneficiaries amounting to 787 Mt. of mixed food. Food deliveries to Bassu camp (for 5,500 beneficiaries) was resumed after despatches were suspended due to security reasons. Movements of UN personnel in NWFP, including the tribal areas are now subject to armed escorts. There has been marked decrease in repatriation, which is now 50 % below the levels as reported during previous months.
(f) In the province of Balochistan, the dispatches and distribution of food commodities to the camps for the month of August is in progress. In Latifabad, the food distribution is complete. The dispatches of food commodities to Muhammad Khel are in progress. The dispatches to the Chaman camps will start from 15 August 2003.
(g) Under EMOP 1071.0, WFP food commodities were distributed in 93 villages in district Chagai in Balochistan Province. A total of 39 Mt. of pulses and 29 Mt. of vegetable oil were distributed among 23, 814 beneficiaries. The preparations for next week's EMOP training are underway.
(a) On 11 August, the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) took over peacekeeping tasks in Kabul from the international Security Assistance Force (ISAF), NATO's mandate and composition of the troops are similar to that of ISAF. A number of ambushes, shooting incidents, rocket fire and the placement of improvised explosive devices on roads in eastern provinces were reported. High-risk areas in the east include districts in Nangarhar, Kunar Laghman and Nuristan provinces.
(b) Under EMOP During the period, 437, 767 beneficiaries received 3,136 Mt. of food.
B) East and Central Africa: (1) Burundi, (2) Ethiopia, (3) Eritrea, (4) Djibouti, (5) Uganda, (6) Sudan, (8) Rwanda, (9) Tanzania, (10) Democratic Republic of Congo
(a) The Government and the fighting faction of the CNDD-FDD held talks in Dar-Es-Salaam to discuss the implementation of the cease-fire agreement agreed upon in December 2002. In connection with the peace process, the Burundi Head of State met with his counterparts of Mozambique and Ethiopia to plead for the speedy deployment of their troops to join the AMIB.
(b) The ACF (Action against Hunger) residence in Kayanza was looted by 24 bandits. The NGO withdrew from that province evacuating 4 international and 4 national staff. Insecurity created by highway robbery, looting of household property continued in different provinces.
(c) A rapid assessment conducted in Rugazi, Kabarore commune (Kayanza province) following reports of increased food needs revealed that some vulnerable populations have been cut off food assistance since April 2003 due to the prevailing insecurity in the area. On Friday 8 August, WFP distributed 76.688 Mt. of food to 6,970 vulnerable persons. The remaining 8,295 persons were assisted on Monday 11th August - a 20-days ration amounting to 91.245 Mt. was provided.
(d) WFP is planning to distribute about 208 Mt. to assist 12,646 displaced persons in the Mutambu commune (Bujumbura Rural province) as a result the resumption of intense fighting in early August. The displaced come from Ruvyagira, Nyankere, Bamba, Masenga and Bugongo hills. A 30-day assistance will be provided on the 12-13 August.
(e) During this reporting period, the Household Food Economy Assessment teams conducted a rapid assessment in Rugazi zone of Kabarore commune in Kayanza province. Their findings indicated that over 3,000 households were affected by permanent looting and acts of robbery and that they were in need of assistance. Another assessment was conducted in Makamba and 14,777 households including 3,369 returning from exile, were targeted for future distributions.
(f) Between 4 and 10 August, WFP distributed a total 429.54 Mt. of food to 30,674 beneficiaries through its different programmes/activities.
(g) As of 10th August 2003, the in-country stocks stood at 4,982.074 Mt. with 651 Mt. in transit to the country. During the week under review, the Country Office received 273.65 Mt. of maize and 603.75 Mt. of pulses from Uganda. Pulses and vegetable oil should be urgently dispatched as our distributions are being affected by the low in-country stock.
(a) The Disaster Prevention and Preparedness Commission (DPPC) on 12 August released a Special Early Warning Report on "The Impact of the Belg Harvest and Rains in Pastoral Areas on Food Availability". The report details the findings of the assessment undertaken by multi-agency teams composed of the Government, UN agencies, donors and NGOs: a total of 2.4 million additional beneficiaries need food assistance as of August in addition to the estimate given in earlier assessments. This means that 1.8 million people, who were only targeted for food distributions until July, pending the outcome of the Belg season, will now need an extension of assistance as of August, while there will be 600,000 new beneficiaries. The beneficiary number as of August has therefore increased from 9.9 million established earlier to 12.3 million people, putting the total for the year at 13.2 million.
(b) The total food requirement from August to December 2003 are 617,650 tons, which shows an additional 259,350 Mt. from the April 2003 estimate. The ration rate used for the estimate has been expanded to include pulses, and is set at 500 gm cereals, 50 gm pulses and 15 gm oil per person per day for all beneficiaries, although availability may for the time being limit the rations of pulses and oil to the worst off. An additional 150 gm per person per day of supplementary food (blended food) is also considered for 35 percent of the most vulnerable part of the needy population (children, nursing mothers and the elderly).
(c) Support from donors has resulted in pledges at hand to address most of the additional cereal and supplementary food requirements identified. The DPPC is now requesting 50,015 tons of pulses as an additional contribution to make the relief ration complete and thereby help reduce the problem of malnutrition.
(d) The DPPC, WFP and the other relief partners recognize that there are some extra resources of food aid at hand to address the new needs, but the implication of using the extra resources now is that at the end of the year, unlike in the past, all relief resources would be exhausted. Given the prevailing high level of destitution and malnutrition in many areas, and the likelihood of the emergence of new areas of need during the period leading up to the end of the year and early into 2004, it is recommended that there be sufficient stocks available to meet these likely additional needs. In light of this, the DPPC is appealing to donors to consider the donation of an additional 200,000 tons of cereals, which if not used this year can be carried forward into 2004 as contingency supplies.
(a) The food crisis in Eritrea shows no sign of abating. Below average and late rainfall in the most fertile areas of Eritrea suggest that food production this year will remain below average. The regions of Debub and Maekel in central Eritrea should produce much of Eritrea's cereals, but this is the second year in a row that they have suffered from drought. While in the other major food-producing region of Gash Barka rainfall began promisingly, flooding has more recently raised concern that initial harvest hopes will have to be re-evaluated.
(b) Levels of malnutrition remain high in much of the country -- reaching nearly 20% in Anseba region. This comes as WFP has only 62 percent of the food it requires to help all 900,000 people that it has identified to be in need of drought relief. A lack of funds has forced WFP to reduce the number of people it can feed to the 600,000 most needy cases. The WFP emergency operation that was due to start in April had to be delayed for three months as a result of the resource crisis.
(c) On Monday, 11th August 2003, the Joint Task Force (UN and Government) started the Needs Assessment of the Humanitarian Situation in the six regions of the country. Priority areas for the interim assessment of humanitarian needs include; Food Security, Health and Nutrition, Water and Sanitation, Shelter and Household items. WFP's main focus will be on Food and Food security, with particular emphasis on area planted and condition and development of crops.
(d) The UN has suspended all missions to areas North of Afabet (Nakfa, Afabet, Asmat, Adobha and Karora sub regions), due to a recent security incident involving a vehicle belonging to an International NGO which was attacked on a road North of Nakfa in the Northern Red Sea Region. Confirmed reports say that gunmen with automatic weapons and RPGs opened fire at the NGO vehicle killing two national staff and seriously wounding the driver. This has also affected the on-going Needs Assessment mission in the area.
(a) Since the Government has stepped up measures to reduce the number of illegal immigrants in the country, many illegals are leaving Djibouti voluntarily before the deadline of 31.08.03. To remain and work in Djibouti, foreigners must have a valid visa, a resident card and a work permit.
(b) Work has started on the transit camp for asylum seekers and WFP is expecting to provide food to the asylum seekers, both in the new transit camp and in the refugee camps. WFP has not received an official request from UNHCR for the food commodities.
(c) Under PRRO 10134 - Assistance to Refugees in Djibouti some 21,063 beneficiaries were assisted during the reporting period.
(d) ONARS, the government agency responsible for managing the refugee camps started propositioning the commodities in the two refugee camps for the August distributions. As there is not sufficient wheat flour available for all refugees, rice will be distributed as the cereal. A loan from 10283 was required to ensure the supply of vegetable oil.
(e) The CO is still waiting for the PRRO 10134 to be approved to get the additional commodities required to continue the project until December 03. Other commodities will be borrowed from PRRO 10283 to ensure the distributions in September.
(f) Under the recently approved PRRO 10283 - Assistance to vulnerable groups and refugees - distribution for the first FFW project was held on the 12.08.03 in Ripta. Sixty beneficiaries received less than 5mt of commodities. Food Aid Monitors have been assigned to the four districts to initiate other FFW projects.
(g) Approximately 4,000mt to be transferred from 10134. An additional confirmed contribution has been received (1000mt of Wheat flour, 200mt of Vegetable oil and 200mt of Corn Soya Blend). The project has not received any salt or sugar. Salt can be transferred from EMOP 10099 and sugar can be purchased locally.
(a) The population in eastern Uganda continues to face regular attacks by the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) rebels.
(b) WFP continues to provide relief food assistance to the displaced population in northern Uganda. During the past week, the Country Office distributed 2,405 Mt. of food aid to 194,852 displaced persons in Gulu and Pader districts.
(c) The 16,000 refugees displaced from Achol-Pii refugee settlement in Pader district in August 2002 will be relocated to Madi Okollo and Ikafe refugee Settlements in Arua and Yumbe districts, north eastern Uganda. The relocation exercise, to be conducted jointly by the Department for Refugees (Office of the Prime Minister) as the lead agency, together with UNHCR and WFP, begins 15 August 2003. WFP plans to initially distribute a one-month ration of food to 900 persons (26 Mt.). In addition, the CO will provide food assistance to the newly relocated caseload.
(d) The UN Secretary-General's Special Envoy for IDPs, Dr. Francis M. Deng, is visiting Uganda, 11-15 August 2003 at the invitation of the Government of Uganda.
(a) An interagency Flash Appeal was issued on 9 August 2003 urging donors response to cater for the needs of the population affected by recent floods in Kassala City and other areas. The WFP-led needs assessment and beneficiary registration in Kassala was completed on 08 August. The assessment was done jointly with the State authorities, HAC and NGOs. The first targeted WFP food distribution started on 10 August. To date 195 MT of mixed food commodities was distributed to 2,373 affected households.
(b) Budget Revision to EMOP 10048.2 is under preparation and will accommodate additional food requirements for the victims of the flood emergency. The additional new requirement comes at a time when WFP urged donors for new contributions to prevent a major break in the cereal pipeline estimated for September. The general food rations have been cut selectively by 50% since August 01.
(c) The second phase of Sobat corridor barge operation started on 13 August 2003. A total of 1,176 Mt. of mixed food commodities is to be distributed to 76,402 beneficiaries in 33 locations.
(a) Food security in Bugesera and localised areas in Kibungo and Umutara continues to deteriorate due to the second successive poor harvest in these areas, with unseasonably dry weather affecting agricultural production. WFP is working closely with the Government to identify the number of people in need of targeted relief distributions. New donations are urgently required to ensure that WFP is able to effectively respond to immediate requirements. WFP is also increasing food-for-work activities in the region.
(b) The pipeline situation for Rwanda may become critical if contributions do not arrive in time, especially in light of current food requirements in Bugesera, Umutara and Kibungo provinces. Failure to meet food requirements in these areas will result in an increase in malnutrition and loss of lives. New donations are therefore urgently required to ensure that WFP is able to respond to immediate requirements.
(a) Please refer to the section on Southern Africa
9) Democratic Republic of Congo
(a) The security situation remained volatile with reports on confrontations between various warring factions in the East on the one hand, and progressive negotiations towards the reunification of the country in the other hand.
(b) In the north eastern part of the country, reports on brutal murders continued to be reported. The Missionary Service News Agency (MISNA) reported the attack of Fataki, a village about 80 km north of Bunia on 2nd and 3rd August, causing the displacement of hundreds of people. Further south, in the North Kivu province, humanitarian sources reported the resumption of Interahamwe led raids on villages located south of Lubero, following the vacuum created by the withdrawal of troops from the Armée Nationale Congolaise (ANC).
(c) During the reporting period, WFP distributed 903 Mt. of food commodities to 107,447 beneficiaries.
(d) The resourcing level of the emergency operation released by WFP in June 2003 has been recovering through recent new pledges from several donors. This operation has been meant to specifically address the growing food needs linked with the persisting and worsening insecurity in eastern DRC. The operation is resources up to almost 41 % against 0.3% during week 31.
(e) Under this emergency operation, a total of 483,000 beneficiaries, mostly IDPs, returnees and local residents should receive 46,346 MT of various food commodities.
(f) In North Kivu. WFP main activity, support to the nutrition centres, was affected by the insufficient quantity of Corn Soya Blend and sugar availed for the smooth implementation of the programmes. WFP provided 52 MT of food to 6,606 beneficiaries. Food for work activities with a view to built up the capacity of vulnerable families in food self reliance were also implemented.
(g) WFP plans food distributions to 30,000 IDPs encamped in Lumbwe and Makala but still have to assess the needs in a few IDPs camps located in the territory of Nuynzu. During the reporting period, a total of 167 MT were distributed to 14,577 beneficiaries comprising of IDPs, moderate and severe malnourished children and their families.
(h) In Katanga a total of 34 Mt. of food were distributed in Malemba Nkulu, Kisenge and Lubumbashi for 3,871 beneficiaries involved in nutrition and food for work programmes. FFW programmes were mainly carried out in Lubumbashi. With the slow rhythm featuring the repatriation of Angolan refugees encamped in Kisenge, WFP may have to resume general food distributions. It seems that the suspension of general food distributions to the latter and the increased number of policemen in Kisenge are the base of insecurity in the area.
(i) In Kisangan a total of 109 Mt. of food were distributed to 2,393 beneficiaries. Most of the beneficiaries were involved in FFW activities for the rehabilitation of feeder roads. A screening in the nutritional centres showed that the caseload of malnourished children was stationary. A sensitization campaign has therefore been launched by the provincial inspection services with the support of WFP.
(j) WFP continued to address the needs in the eastern areas through the resources under the PRRO, which are greatly insufficient, i.e., rupture in Corn Soya Blend and sugar.
C) West Africa: (1) Liberia, (2) Côte d'Ivoire, (3) Sierra Leone
(a) Charles Taylor left the country as planned Monday. Yet, new fighting erupted Tuesday only 30 miles from the capital's international airport. Fighting has also resumed in the second port city of Buchanan. On Tuesday, LURD rebels agreed to pull back from Monrovia port by noon Thursday and surrender control to peace- keepers, allowing food to flow in.
(b) Severe shortages of food, water, medicines, toilet facilities, shelter and other basic needs are reported and the prices of food have surged. The Red Cross has also reported a humanitarian crisis in the port city of Buchanan, where more than 8,000 people have taken refugee in the Catholic Mission compound there.
(c) The WFP chartered vessel that left Abidjan with 5 WFP staff and two other humanitarian staff, reached Liberian sea 7th August, and is awaiting a UN clearance to enter the port.
(d) WFP Country Office is currently working on an operation plan for re-entry into Liberia. The issues of food availability in the region, transport and fuel are central bottlenecks. As it is not yet feasible to send trucks from Freetown to Monrovia due to high risk, a preferred option would be by sea. Arrangements are being done for chartering a vessel. At the same time, on Monday August 11, a mission went to Monrovia to assess whether the airport can be used as a temporary base for WFP.
(e) During the reporting period, WFP delivered 17.2 Mt. of HEB. An initial 41 Mt. of HEB was earmarked for Monrovia from Brindisi, Italy but due to the absence of direct flights between both cities, quantities are being flown to Freetown as and when DPKO has space available. A total amount of 4 Mt. of HEB was delivered to Médecins Sans Frontières France (MSF) on August 13. WFP started distribution of HEB in Monrovia on August 14.
(f) Estimated requirements for the first month are 8,909 Mt. (540,000 beneficiaries). A total of 10,649 Mt. is available almost immediately in the region. This amount is composed of stocks that had been diverted to Sierra Leone (3,454 Mt.). and Guinea (2,935 Mt.), in addition to loans from countries in the region. An unknown amount of food stocks might also be left (after looting) in the WFP warehouse at the Monrovia port.
2) Côte d'Ivoire
(a) Ethnic tensions in western parts of the country are increasing: Guiglo transit camp which was designed to hold 1,200 IDPs now hosts between 4,000 and 5,000, mostly Third Country Nationals that were chased out of their villages by the local populations who were threatening to kill them. The sanitation situation is particularly worrying. IOM is calling this a state of emergency, as one may expect up to thousands to arrive in the centre in the coming days if the tension intensifies. WFP and Solidarities continue with Canteen Programmes in the transit centres at Guiglo, which will have to be extended with the recent arrivals.
(b) Refugee caseloads were again updated after the HCR and SAARA reported an increased number of new refugees along the Liberian border. WFP caseload for refugees in the Tabou area includes 40,756 in 13 villages, 4,435 at Tabou SAARA office, and about 4,000 registered in the Tabou transit centre.
(c) During the reporting period, 362.25 MT of commodities were distributed. Due to a pipeline break, rations and caseloads for August had to be reduced by 30 percent. There are shortfalls of pulses, oil, cereals and CSB. A total of 2,661 Mt. will be distributed to cover a total caseload of 284,600 people in August. The EMOP 10244.1 (May -- Dec) is currently covered 72% against the appeal.
3) Sierra Leone
(a) The security situation in general remained calm throughout the country during the reporting period. Yet, the movement of refugees from the Kailahun axis to Tobanda camp and the way station continued during the reporting period. At present there are 751 refugees in the Kailahun way station. Meanwhile, the refugees are awaiting relocation by UNHCR to various camps.
(b) During the reporting period, WFP supported a total of 59,780 beneficiaries (34,998 female) with 1521.06 MT of food.
(c) About 6 Mt. of high Energy Biscuits were dispatched to Monrovia by Air to meet the needs of some of the vulnerable caseloads in Monrovia.
(d) The construction of the Kailahun sub-office is in progress and may be completed by the end of this month.
D) Southern Africa: (1) Regional, (2) Angola, (3) Lesotho, (4) Mozambique, (5) Namibia, (6) Swaziland, (7)Tanzania, (8) Zimbabwe
(a) As reported last week, a recent donor contribution has significantly improved the critical pipeline situation from September through December in Zimbabwe. However, the pipeline condition remains precarious for pulses and vegetable oil from September onwards for Mozambique. In Lesotho, a severe pipeline break for Vegetable Oil commences now and will persist until October. In Swaziland shortfalls for pulses are critical as stocks run out by September and no confirmed contributions are in sight, with a 100% CSB shortfall in October and November.
(b) In South Africa, latest estimates indicate that South Africa will have an exact surplus of 1.3 million tonnes of maize in 2003/04, nearly 90% of which is white maize. Subject to receiving cash from donors, WFP expects to buy around 200,000 tonnes of maize this year.
(c) Early indications for 2004, which will be planted from October - December, are not favourable. After an exceptionally dry autumn and winter, residual soil moisture levels in key maize growing areas are described as 'possibly the lowest ever'. Farm prices for maize are currently less than half their level at the corresponding time in 2002. Unless conditions improve, farmers are likely to leave significant areas fallow in the upcoming season. Aggregate maize production may fall sharply therefore.
(a) There have been large numbers of returnees recorded across the region during the week: WFP continues to provide assistance for IDP's arriving in Mavinga in search of food, with 220 new arrivals from the Likua area. In the newly accessible Ngonguembo municipality, 6,420 IDP returnees were registered for food assistance. In Kuanza Sul, Pambangals commune experienced a rapid influx of IDP returnees and 7,200 former WFP beneficiaries from Cassongue municipality arrived.
(b) In Kuanza Sul, a Rapid Food Needs Assessment (RFNA) by WFP and German Agro Action (GAA) in Kifangondo and Catofe areas, in the Kibala municipality, concluded that the situation of around 18,000 recent IDP returnees to the area is critical, and there is an urgent need for food assistance and seeds and tools for the October agricultural campaign.
(c) The lack of sufficient funding to WFP's two SOs 'Logistics Services to the Humanitarian Community' (10149.1) and 'Passenger air transport' Special Operation (10146.1), still poses a serious threat to operations of the humanitarian community at this critical time in the resettlement process. WFP is urgently appealing for renewed donor support to these operations. Due to the poor funding situation, WFP is only accepting limited critical non-food item cargo requests from humanitarian agencies under the SO 10149.1. shortfall of $2.4 million funding remains for this operation out of a total budget of $6.9 million. The second SO 10146.1 is also seriously threatened and WFP may have suspend this vital service to the humanitarian community by the end of August in the absence of further donations. There remains a $5.0 million funding shortfall for this operation out of a total budget of $6.1 million.
(a) Abnormally dry conditions continue to cause concern. Following unusually dry conditions in April, there was no significant precipitation in the country between 11 May and 9 August. As a result, winter crops such as wheat, peas and vegetables have largely failed and spring cultivation is more difficult in dry conditions and is likely to be delayed. In view of the hardship that these conditions are creating, WFP is considering advancing the start date of its Targeted Food Distribution/VGF programme, which is currently planned to start in November. During the reported week: 10,345 beneficiaries received a ration, including maize, pulses, vegetable oil and CSB.
(a) WFP dispatched 1,399 tonnes of food during the reporting period.
(b) The food pipeline for the country is quickly running dry, and as of this week, vegetable oil stocks have completely run out. Moreover, there will be a serious shortage for pulses come October, when only 37 % of required stocks will be in country. Also in the month of October, cereal stocks will dip to 85 % of required stocks. It is essential that additional resources be identified immediately.
(a) As a result of the Namibian Governments decision to grant WFP permission to import maize from South Africa, a distribution of full 2,100 kcal per day is currently being delivered to 19,000 people in Osire refugee camp. 410 refugees in the Kassava transit centre received full rations this week. During the week, a fifth UNHCR convoy repatriating 200 Angolan refugees from Namibia, left Osire camp bound for Angola.
(a) Swaziland will have a pipeline break for pulses during August. The shortage will continue for the next three months as there are no pulses scheduled to arrive until December 2003. CSB stocks are also dangerously low, with a complete 100% shortfall due in October and November. Additional funding is urgently required.
(b) As reported in previous weeks, food distributions have been on hold following discussions between the Swaziland Government and WFP regarding a plan for assisting identified vulnerable populations not covered by EMOP 10290.0. Distributions are scheduled to resume next week.
(a) The Prime Minister of the United Republic of Tanzania today officially appealed to the international community for emergency food and seed assistance to support some 1.9 million drought affected people in Tanzania. Poorly distributed and below normal levels of rainfall during the 2002-2003 cropping season have led to an estimated 800,000 Mt. food deficit in the country. There are approximately 450,000 Mt. available in country, and the Government is removing taxes on imported rice and maize to induce the private sector to help cover the remaining gap. The Prime Minister has pledged that his Government will release 33,000 Mt. of maize grain to be sold at a subsidised rate to the 1 .9 million affected people during the months of October and November. It has requested financial support to cover the transportation of this amount. In addition, the Prime Minister has requested 45,000 Mt. of relief food aid through WFP to be distributed between December 2003 and March 2004, and also for 3200 Mt. of seeds to be handled by FAO. He also reported serious food and seed shortages in the islands of Zanzibar, and stated that the Government plans to undertake a detailed vulnerability assessment there to quantify the food and seed requirements. In terms of food aid modalities, the Prime Minister expressed a preference for some form of food for work as opposed to "free" distributions.
(b) The Prime Minister also expressed his grave concern on the climate outlook for the forthcoming season. The Government fears that another poor season will have serious implications on food and water availability, as well as having adverse economic implications, including disruptions in the national electrical supply. The donor community thanked the Prime Minister for his Government's proactive stance on the national food security situation, and indicated that they intend to seriously consider his requests for assistance.
(a) The food security situation in the country remains critical and is deteriorating faster than at the same period last year, as the cumulative effect of two years of unrelenting hardship take their toll on coping mechanisms. The acute shortage of grain from the Grain Marketing Board has, over the past few weeks, given rise to vast differences in price in the different locations. The high prices continue to be beyond the reach of many rural households. Reports have been received that Corn Soya Blend is undertaking grain procurement, despite the severe foreign exchange constraints, which afflict the country. In addition, due to foreign exchange constraints' no inspectors is able to travel to Beira to phyto-sanitary inspect a cargo of WFP sorghum until 19 August. This has caused an additional delay of at least two weeks in receiving this much-needed cargo.
(b) WFP met various district development committees over the past week to discuss implementation of the EMOP. As more and more households run out of food stocks from this year's below average harvest, WFP and partner NGO's are planning to increase the level of distribution over the coming months.
E) Asia: (1) Democratic Republic of Korea
1) Democratic Republic of Korea
(a) Under EMOP 10141.1, cereal distributions to nearly 3 million VGF beneficiaries, suspended from July, resumed at the beginning of August with an initial loan of 9,700 Mt. of cereals from the government. From next week, distributions on the West Coast will proceed using the first tranche of the 100,000 Mt. RoK maize contribution. East coast distributions of the RoK maize will be delayed until at least beginning September as shipments to Chongjin and Hungnam will only arrive towards the latter part of August. Consequently, WFP has requested to borrow an additional 4,500 Mt. of cereals to cover East Coast needs in the interim.
(b) Once resumed, cereal distributions are expected to extend into November with the arrival of further shipments from: Italy (6,000 Mt. rice and 13,000 Mt. wheat), USA (5,000 Mt. rice) and Russia (40,500 Mt. wheat). Taking into account these contributions, shortfalls of about 65,600 Mt. are projected for the next six months (August through January 2004).
F) Latin America and the Caribbean: (1) Colombia, (2) El Salvador, (3) Ecuador, (4) Guatemala, (5) Nicaragua, (6) Peru
(a) A return of some 60 families (more than 400 people) is planned for the following days in the Municipality of Lloro (Department of Choco) despite continued tensions between armed groups in the area. Thanks to the assistance of several institutions, 27 families have already returned home. In the same Department, a planned return of 70 families from Quibdo, the capital, to river communities has been postponed.
(b) The humanitarian situation in Eastern Antioquia remains worrying. Due to continuous hostilities in the rural area of the Municipality of San Francisco, 400 families have fled to different areas of the Department. No possible returns are foreseen due to continued clashes between armed groups.
(c) Other displacements have taken place recently in Catatumbo, in the Province of Ocaña (North Santander), and criminal violence and selective killings were reported last week in the capital, Cúcuta.
(d) The situation in El Salado (Department of Bolivar), where WFP supported a return process some months ago, is tense. On 7 August, an armed group murdered a health promoter who had worked closely with WFP.
(e) A total of 146 Mt. food was delivered to Community Kitchen, Food-for-Training and Food-for-Work projects in 12 Departments, representing the last food distributions of PRRO 6139.
(f) Within the framework of the new PRRO 10158.0, WFP continues to target new pre- and primary school children, MCH and nutritional recovery beneficiaries, using various rapid assessment tools. WFP sub-offices and counterparts have already targeted 125 projects as recipients for primary school feeding.
2) El Salvador
(a) WFP continues to provide relief assistance through PRRO 10212.0 in the context of the coffee crisis that has hit the coffee producing Departments. Seasonal rains have continued to fall throughout the country, raising hopes of a bountiful maize and bean harvest. A nation-wide out-break of pneumonia continues to claim lives -- 321 persons have died so far this year and 67,627 people have sought medical attention.
(b) Monthly food rations totaling 332 Mt. were distributed to 6,093 families in the western coffee-producing Departments of Ahuhachapan and Sonsonate. Letters of Understandings (LOUs) have been signed with the Ministry of Health, the National Family Secretariat (SNF), Catholic Relief Services, Fundacion Maquilishuat (FUMA)/OXFAM America and the Swiss Red Cross to address through partnerships the ongoing crisis and with an aim to assist 10,000 of the worst affected families over the next 6 months. A separate LOU has been signed with Save the Children USA with the objective to assist 520 children under the age of five attending community education centers in the Departments of Cuscatlàn and Cabañas.
(c) A recently approved contribution of 2,920 Mt. will enable the operation to meet the current projected needs through January 2004. Additional donor support has allowed for the local purchase of 80 Mt. of beans, to be initiated in the coming week, further strengthening the PRRO pipeline.
(a) An estimated 1000 people were affected by flooding of the Tigre and Conambo rivers in the central area of the rain forest, 350 Km from Quito. The areas affected have become isolated, and communities are trying to rehabilitate the inaccessible landing strip in order to receive food and other assistance.
(b) WFP will assist 200 families affected by the floods in Puyo as a response to a request put forth by the Civil Defence to assist some 20 indigenous communities that lost around 40 hectares of staple crops. The floods also destroyed public roads and other local infrastructure.
(c) WFP is assisting Colombian refugees and asylum seekers with food rations in four provinces bordering Colombia. As of early August 2003, the total number of refugees has increased to 18,500 people. Distribution, monitoring, and evaluation activities are being coordinated in conjunction with UNHCR.
(a) The "canícula", (the period of decreased rainfall), continues to affect the country and is expected to last for another two weeks.
(b) The upsurge in the number of pneumonia cases in Guatemala has raised concern about the capacity of the public health system to deal with the increasing demand.
(c) The legal battle to cancel the registration of General Efrain Rios Mott for the ruling Frente Republicano Guatemalteco (FRG) is not yet over, as opposition parties have continued to appeal the decision of the Electoral Supreme Court and of the Constitutional Court to register General Ríos Montt as presidential candidate. Meanwhile, other political parties, such as the Partido de Avanzada Nacional (PAN), continue to register their candidates for the November 9 Presidential Election.
(d) The PAN candidate for Mayor of the Municipality of La Libertad, Department of Petén, denounced an assassination attempt against him, as a group of armed men opened fire to his vehicle. The incident underscores the likelihood that politically related violence would continue in the run for the upcoming elections.
(e) Insecurity in Guatemala City continues to pose concern. A Gourmet Center located less than a 5-minute walk from the UNDP office building was the site of a 10-minute shoot out between policemen and alleged kidnappers at midday on 7 August. It is not yet clear whether it was a kidnapping attempt or a drug-related incident. Crime rates continue to increase nation wide.
(a) Protesting small-scale / land less farmers and agricultural workers hit by the coffee crisis reached an agreement with the Government after one week of negotiations. The main result is the follow-up of the agreement reached last year, which included land tenure and the provision of jobs, food and medicines.
(b) According Nicaragua Civil Defense, some 4,640 persons were affected by last week's flooding in the Municipality of Prinzapolka, in the Northern Atlantic Region (RAAN). A total of 1,322 hectares of crops were lost in this flood-prone area, include such staple crops as maize, yucca, banana and rice. WFP is monitoring the situation.
(c) Discussions are taking place between WFP and the Government counterpart to finalize targeting under PRRO 10212.0 "Targeted food assistance for persons affected by shocks and the recovery of livelihoods". Among the targeted groups, poor farming families affected by the coffee crisis will be provided assistance. Main activities will include disaster prevention and mitigation at the community level.
(a) On 8 July an earthquake registering 4.5 on the Richter scale occurred in three districts in the Southern provinces of Chumbivilcas and Paruro, 130 Km south of Cusco city, Department of Cuzco. A total of 366 buildings were damaged and 165 destroyed, including 9 schools and 2 health centers. Preliminary information from the National Institute of Civil Defense indicates that some 600 people have been affected as a result of damaged/destroyed homes.
(b) On Thursday, 7 August at 13:00 hours, thirty members of the Peru Workmen's Union violently and surprisingly occupied UNDP premises. Another 500 people remained outside the office, supporting those inside with slogans and banners. The UN Resident Representative held an interview with the group's leader. No UN staff members were harmed and UNDP premises were not damaged.
G) Eastern Europe and the Caucasus: (1) Armenia, (2) Georgia
(a) Some 124 food-for-work projects continued during the reporting period. Around 2,300 beneficiaries from 98 villages in Ararat Province participated in a joint WFP/UNFPA Food-for-Training Programme on the Improvement of Sexual and Reproductive Health. From 1 to 31 July, a total of 881 tons of food was delivered for distribution to approximately 40,000 beneficiaries under FFW and FFT.
(b) Preparations for an expanded school-feeding programme for 2003/2004 are ongoing. WFP meetings with headmasters have explained the requirements for schools to participate in the programme. In August, WFP monitors are carrying out a pre-check of the identified schools to make sure that they meet these requirements. Implemented in the same four most vulnerable provinces where WFP's school feeding programme was established in 2001, the expanded programme will benefit 20,000 pre- and primary schoolchildren.
(c) WFP is expecting the arrival of 4,000 tons of wheat flour, 1,000 tons of vegetable oil and 500 tons of pulses in September, which will cover the requirements under PRRO 6120.02 (Relief and Recovery Assistance for Vulnerable groups in Armenia), until the end of the year. In the meantime, WFP has arranged for the local procurement of 1,154 tons of wheat flour and 76 tons of pulses to implement activities in July/August.
(a) An agreement on the implementation of the recovery component of PRRO 10211.0 was signed between WFP Georgia and local NGO Abkhazinterconti (AIC) for the period August 2003 -- March 2004. AIC will conduct community mobilisation in the rural communities of two targeted regions -- Guria and Racha-Lechkhumi, develop FFW proposals by communities that best address their food insecurity, and be responsible and accountable for the reception and distribution of food at the FDP. During the course of the agreement a total of 890 tons of food will be distributed to 11,775 rural vulnerable people.
(b) A total of 236 tons of food was distributed during the reporting period: 134 tons of food was delivered to 4,000 Chechen refugees covering the months of July-August 2003; and 102 tons of food was distributed to 1,390 participants (5,564 beneficiaries) of FFW projects for 30,600 workdays accomplished in June 2003.
Note: All tonnage figures in this report refer to metric tonnes
(END WFP Emergency Report No 33)