UNICEF Libya Humanitarian Situation Report, Mid-Year 2018
• During the first half of 2018, over 64,000 girls and boys received psychosocial support through community and school-based Child Friendly Spaces. UNICEF is working to scale-up its programme of mainstreaming of psychosocial services and violence prevention in schools to build the resilience and wellbeing of the most vulnerable children.
• Escalating conflict in Derna severely impacted the 125,000 residents of the city including an estimated 55,000 children. UNICEF responded by distributing 1,000 children kits (containing hygiene and recreational supplies) benefiting 1,000 displaced children in AlBayda and Sheehat. An additional 1,000 hygiene kits and 5 recreational kits will be distributed through the Libyan Red Crescent benefiting 5,450 children and families.
• Over 80 cases of measles have been reported across various cities in Libya. UNICEF is working with the Libyan government and partners to conduct a nationwide measles immunization campaign.
• UNICEF Libya continues to face a funding gap of 71.5 percent in its Humanitarian Action for Children. Without urgently receiving additional funds, UNICEF will not be able to meet the education, health, nutrition, water and sanitation and child protection urgent needs of the 245,000 people, including 165,000 children, which are targeted in 2018.
SITUATION IN NUMBERS
1.1 million # of people in need of humanitarian assistance
378,000 children in need of humanitarian assistance
268,000 children in need of safe water, sanitation and hygiene
300,000 children in need of education in emergency support
343,200 children in need of protection
179,400 Internally Displaced People
UNICEF Appeal 2018
Situation Overview & Humanitarian Needs
The humanitarian situation in Libya remains acute. An estimated 1.1 million people of whom, 378,000 are children, are in need of lifesaving humanitarian assistance and protection across the country. Combined with the deteriorating economic situation and political fragmentation, challenges remain in delivering a timely and effective response to vulnerable populations, whom are quickly losing their resilience to cope with humanitarian needs as they arise.
In the first half of 2018, escalations of armed conflict continued in various parts of Libya. Most significantly in Derna, fighting between the Libyan National Army (LNA) and the Derna Protection Force (DPF, previously the Derna Mujahedeen Shura Council) in May resulted in at least 10 deaths and eight injuries among civilians, putting at risk the 125,000 residents of the city including an estimated 55,000 children. Schools have been closed, the hospital is in need of medical supplies and water shortages are common. Over 3,000 families have been displaced from Derna to neighbouring towns and cities and at least 800 families displaced in the city itself.
In June, fighting also began between the Libyan National Army and militias in the Oil Crescent. Disagreements over the control of the two largest ports, Ras Lanuf and Es Sider, between East and West authorities have led to their closure, severely affecting oil production which will have economic repercussions across the country.
In addition, inter-communal clashes in southern Libya continue to take place. Direct attacks on civilians as well as indiscriminate attacks are widely reported and have led to approximately 1,000 families displaced in areas including Sabha, Ubari and Murzuq, with some also moving to Tripoli.
Medical facilities in Libya are characterised by a lack of vaccines and deteriorating facilities; 17.5 percent of hospitals, 20 percent of Primary Health Care facilities and 8 percent of other types of health facilities are not operational. In addition, a measles outbreak has been reported in various cities in Libya, with the National Centre for Disease Control reporting over 80 cases at the end of June.UNICEF is coordinating with the health sector to implement a nationwide measles immunization campaign.
On 3 June 2018, Misrata and Tawargha officials signed a reconciliation treaty ending a seven-year-long conflict allowing the return of displaced Tawargha residents to their city. Although Misratan officials confirmed that displaced families could start returning, the timeframe is not clear, and the security situation needs to be considered especially in regard to mines and unexploded ordinances.
UNICEF’s assessment of the 25 educational facilities in the deserted city revealed that six schools and two training centres have been destroyed, while 15 schools and two vocational institutes require extensive repairs at an estimated cost of over $US 21 million.
The humanitarian context in Libya continues to be compounded by the desperate situation of migrants and people in need of international protection such as refugees and asylum seekers. According to IOM estimates, Libya is currently hosting 690,351 migrants (9% children, 58% of whom are unaccompanied). As a result of the increased capacity of the Libyan Coast Guard as of 21 June, a total of 8,144 refugees and migrants (including children) have been intercepted/rescued attempting to make the journey to Europe. This has additionally led to a decrease of arrivals of refugees and migrants to Europe; in comparison to 2017 arrivals are what they were this time last year at 40,073 compared to 80,863.
Since the beginning of 2018, however, under its Voluntary Humanitarian Return programme, IOM has assisted over 8,000 migrants to return home and since November 2017, UNHCR has evacuated 1,730 refugees out of Libya (1,408 to Niger, 312 to Italy and 10 to Romania), including Unaccompanied and Separated Children (UASC) and other vulnerable groups. Despite these efforts, the situation for refugees and migrants in Libya continues to deteriorate, with conditions in detention centers particularly worrying. UNICEF is responding to alleviate the suffering of the most vulnerable children and families, scaling up the response in cooperation other UN agencies in order to determine the best interests of children.
With the lifting of the evacuation status from Libya on the 2 of February 2018, UNICEF international staff have been based in Tripoli since the beginning of May. The Government of Libya has also formally endorsed UNICEF Libya’s Country Programme Document 2019-20, it is now currently published for member states' review before being presented to the Executive Board in September.