On 16 April, Typhoon Surigae (locally known as Bising) passed the northern part of Palau with wind speeds of up to 120 km/h which resulted in damaged houses and agricultural damage on Kayangel island. The National Emergency Management Office (NEMO) and the Palau Red Cross Society are currently conducting assessments.
Over the weekend, Typhoon Surigae passed near the eastern seaboard of the Philippines and rapidly intensified from Category 2 to Category 5 in less than 36 hours. Local officials preemptively evacuated about 68,400 residents in the provinces of Catanduanes and Albay, both of which were heavily affected by Super Typhoon Goni in October 2020. Typhoon Surigae was last estimated at 475 km east of Infanta, Quezon with maximum sustained winds of 175 km/h and gustiness of up to 215 km/h. Surigae is not expected to make landfall as it continues to move northward, but strong winds and heavy rainfall over Eastern Visayas and Bicol regions are forecast until 20 April. Local governments have pre-positioned relief packs and are assisting the displaced residents. Over the past few days, OCHA liaised with anticipatory action partners for the possible activation of early response activities.¹
PAPUA NEW GUINEA
On 13 April, a landslide in the Waiya Ausa community in Lumusa local-level-government, Mul Baiyer Lumusa district in the Western Highlands province resulted in three deaths, three people injured, a number of destroyed homes and displacement of about 30 people (six families), according to the Baptist Union of PNG. The displaced families are currently hosted by relatives. The affected community is in need of temporary shelter materials, blankets, sleeping mats, clothing, water containers and kitchen sets. Hagen General Hospital is currently only providing limited services due to the recent surge in COVID-19 cases among healthcare workers. Heavy rain has caused floods and landslides in several provinces over the last few weeks.²
Armed clashes between the Myanmar Armed Forces (MAF) and the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) continued and intensified in several townships in Kachin State resulting in civilian casualties and internal displacement. On 17 April, one man was injured by artillery shelling during intense fighting in Hpakant Township. Between 12 and 15 April, about 440 people were newly displaced, three civilians were reportedly killed, and a number of people were injured due to clashes in Momauk Township. The exact number of civilian casualties could not be confirmed due to access challenges. Since 1 February, almost 5,000 people have been displaced due to the resurgence of armed confrontations between the MAF and the KIA, of which 4,000 people remain displaced across several townships in Kachin as of 19 April. Humanitarian partners and local communities continue to respond to the needs of newly displaced people, and the needs of about 95,500 people who have been hosted in displacement camps since 2011.³
Several districts in the provinces of Balochistan and Sindh experience drought conditions which have resulted in increased food insecurity. Between October 2020 and March 2021, the impact of La Niña caused below normal rainfall in drought prone areas of Balochistan (-63.3 per cent rainfall) and Sindh (-77.3 per cent). According to the National Drought Monitoring Centre (NDMC), moderate drought conditions are prevailing across 18 districts in the two provinces. An estimated 1.8 million people are expected to experience acute food insecurity and 530,000 people emergency levels of food insecurity from March to June 2021 in 12 of the 18 drought-affected districts, according to the Food Security Sector. The Pakistan Meteorological Department warns that drought conditions may continue and worsen with adverse effects on agriculture and livestock. Food sector partners are supporting the Government of Balochistan in conducting a joint assessment in the ten drought-affected districts.4
- UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
- To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.