Kenya + 1 more

Kenya: Humanitarian update - May 2007

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1.0 THE HUMANITARIAN SITUATION

1.1 General Overview:

During the month of May, there has been a further escalation of violence in many parts of the country, the most alarming being the gruesome killings of Matatu bus operators and other private citizens allegedly being carried out by the Mungiki sect. Cattle raids and ethnic-related violence have also been noted with 30 lives being lost due to cattle raiding and a further 5 deaths and numerous injuries coming as a result of separate incidents of ethnic violence in Bura Division (Tana River District) and Kuresoi in Molo District.

Heavy rains caused flash flooding in coastal and western regions. Four children died while 3,000 people were displaced in Coast Province and over 3,600 people were displaced in Western Province following flash floods in Budalangi. Apart from usual displacements, the rains disrupted normal activities and destroyed property of unknown value i.e. crops, housing facilities and infrastructure. The Kenya food Security Meeting (KFSM) reports that the delayed rains have been erratic in most parts of the country and rainfall has been poor in most of the northern pastoral districts. There are concerns for poor pasture regeneration in Turkana, Mandera and Wajir Districts as this, coupled with inadequate rainfall, would strain pastoral livelihoods and household coping strategies in areas that have experienced repeated calamities over the past 12-15 months.

Furthermore, several cases of cholera outbreaks have been reported in 10 districts in Kenya. Affected areas include: Kisumu, Mandera, West Pokot, Turkana, Siaya, Wajir and Dadaab camps with over 227 cases during the past month. Poor hygiene and sanitation practices have been cited as causal factors in the upsurge where some cases are thought to go unrecorded because of poor access to health services. A measles outbreak in Wajir and Garissa districts has also caused some concern and there has been an outbreak of Aflatoxin poisoning in Meru District.

Despite the closure of Kenya-Somalia border, UNHCR has recorded close to 5,000 refugees who have managed to trickle in since January 2007. Although the Kenyan Government has accepted that the screening and registration process take place, they have requested that the refugees be shipped off to Kakuma camp. The move could address some of the Kenyan authorities' security concerns about the asylum seekers but would be very costly and would require heave logistics arrangements.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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