Almost six weeks on from the Beirut port explosion, the humanitarian situation has started to stabilize on the ground. The impact of the 4 August explosion however remains very present, both in terms of the physical and economic consequences as well as in the minds of those affected. In the past week, people rallied around the hope of finding survivors in the rubble of a collapsed building during a three-day rescue operation. The huge fire at the port on 10 September also reignited the trauma and anxiety that people affected are still dealing with since the first explosion. The fire also produced huge plumes of smoke covering Beirut for many hours and entering houses that are still without windows.
The most immediate needs have largely been addressed, and while basic humanitarian assistance will continue, the overall coordinated response is shifting towards longer term support. There remains an urgency however in delivering more structured assistance to those who need it most.
UNHCR is responding to needs in the shelter and protection sectors, appealing for USD 35 million (USD 32.5 million and USD 2.5 million respectively). In total, UNHCR aims to reach over 100,000 affected persons through all its interventions.
We are also leading the sectoral coordination in those two sectors to prevent gaps and overlaps, maximize efficiency of aid and ensure consistency in the response to affected populations.