Pakistan - Earthquake: OCHA Situation Report No. 20


Ref: OCHA/GVA - 181
OCHA Situation Report No. 20
South Asia - Earthquake

Situation Overview

1. The latest government casualty estimates continue to rise: as of 3 November, the death toll has reached 73,276 and the number of injured 69,260.

2. To date the confirmed contributions to the Flash Appeal stand at USD 84 million out of the USD 550 million requested (15% funded). An additional USD 48 million has been pledged. The lack of funding is affecting helicopter operations, and WFP now has to borrow money to keep relief operations running.

3. The "Operation Winter Race" teams, during the first-week pilot phase of their operation, have placed mixed-gender teams in mountain villages and have assisted in erecting 160 shelters to date. The goal is to increase their number to 20 five-persons teams, able to assist 20-30 families per day/per team with shelter kits and non-food items.

4. An increasing number of people from Allai Valley are arriving at various locations along the Karakorum Highway and around Batagram city, and more are expected to descend to the lower grounds in the coming weeks.

5. Throughout affected areas especially near Muzaffarabad, population movements need to be carefully monitored in view of possible different scenarios with people remaining in their villages or migrating to other locations.

6. The response of the international humanitarian community in Mansehra remains constrained as agencies lack funding and capacity on the ground. In addition there is a lack of accurate qualitative data on possible population movements from the valleys. Inaccessibility continues to restrict interventions in the more remote mountainous areas.

7. Government has announced it will commence compensation payments to families of Rps 25,000 for loss of houses.

8. To date NATO has operated/coordinated 56 relief flights to Pakistan with 1150 tons of assistance. On 3 November five C-130s are scheduled to leave from Turkey with 60 tons of UNHCR relief items plus additional Romanian donations.

9. While international and national relief efforts are ongoing, the people of Pakistan have begun Eid al-Fitr celebrations on Thursday evening, which will continue until Monday.

National Coordination Overview

10. On 2 November, the international relief actors were met by the President of Pakistan, General Pervez Musharraf. The President stressed the continued readiness of the government to coordinate closely with the international efforts. In an informal and inter-active exchange with the NGOs and UN agencies, the President outlined the government's position regarding different aspects of relief operation and subsequent reconstruction plans.

11. The President reiterated the gratitude of the government of Pakistan to all international relief actors for their efforts. He urged them to continue engaging actively in partnerships with government-led relief and reconstruction efforts by providing assistance in their areas of expertise. The President pledged that Pakistan was determined to convert the challenge of the earthquake disaster into an opportunity for the future.

12. The UN Country Team has been preparing a document reflecting the priority activities to be undertaken by the principal UN Agencies on the ground during November before winter sets in, focusing on activities requiring particular attention at this time. The priority plan is in line with the overall strategy for the humanitarian operation that has been developed through the clusters and complements the efforts of the government.

Muzaffarabad Coordination Overview

13. A humanitarian planning cell has been established, focusing on (1) coordination of relief operations between humanitarian partners and the military, (2) information on the deployment and activities of the domestic military forces, (3) the presence and activities of international military contingents, (4) the operational environment and (5) evolving needs of people.

Mansehra Coordination Overview

14. According to the military, the unofficial death toll in the Manserha district is 20,000-30,000.

Bagh Coordination Overview

15. Priority activities for November are being developed, focusing on emergency shelter kits for the high-risk areas.

Batagram Coordination Overview

Four cluster groups have been established: Health, Emergency Shelter, Water and Sanitation, Food and Nutrition.

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