Colombia + 3 more

ODM-WFP emergency situation report on Latin America & the Caribbean 29 Jan 2003

Situation Report
Originally published
1. Colombia
Reporting Date: 01/24 to 01/28/2003

a) Significant Events:

During the week of 20 January, attacks by Colombian paramilitaries on villages in neighboring Panama forced hundreds of indigenous people to flee their homes. Four community leaders were killed and three journalists kidnapped.

UNHCR's implementing partners reported that in recent days, 472 indigenous people - including 324 children - have sought refuge in Boca de Cupe (Central Darien, Panama).

According to UNHCR, Panama hosts 1,515 registered refugees and persons under a special humanitarian protection status, mainly in the Darien region. Most of them are Colombian citizens.

2. El Salvador

Reporting Period: 01/13 to 01/20/2003

a) Significant Events:

WFP continues to provide immediate relief assistance to families affected by the coffee crisis in El Salvador. Monthly food rations are being distributed to 2,138 families (11,400 beneficiaries) with children suffering from severe malnutrition in the provinces of Ahuachapan and Sonsonate.

WFP is reviewing data being gathered in other affected areas to identify the pockets of severe malnutrition in specific areas of the country.

b) Implementation:

WFP is developing work plans with prospective partners such as Catholic Relief Service, OXFAM, World Vision and Fundacion Maquilishuat. These partnerships will allow for the provision of food for training assistance focused on health issues, income generation and agriculture.

3. Nicaragua

Reporting Period: 01/22 to 01/29/2003

a) Significant Events:

On January 29, a fire at the counterpart's warehouse in the city of Leon destroyed WFP commodities (vegetable oil, pulses). At this time, it is difficult to estimate the losses. Precise instructions have been given by WFP to the national counterparts on how to proceed with the separation and selection of commodities.

4. Peru

Reporting Period: 01/20 to 01/28/2003

a) Significant Events:

The Government of Peru declared a state of emergency in the provinces of Puno and Madre de Dios as a result of flooding that severely affected 4,974 families. Reports indicate that more than 2,300 houses, 35,000 hectares of agricultural land and 7,000 heads of cattle were also affected.

The government distributed 25,000 food rations to the people living in Puno, as well as 4,000 house modules, 15,000 blankets and 5,000 light bedspreads.

WFP will carry out an assessment mission on 30 January to evaluate the situation.