Asia and the Pacific: Weekly Regional Humanitarian Snapshot (19 - 25 February 2019)
PAPUA NEW GUINEA
Heavy rains on 17-20 February caused flash flooding, landslides, and blocked roads in the towns of Gazelle, Rabaul and Kokopo, East New Britain province, with one reported death and one missing person due to the severe weather. Flooding damaged a local hydropower station, forcing it to shut down for an indefinite period.
Classes in schools were suspended across the province for the week. Provincial authorities provided temporary shelter to displaced and affected families. The heavy rains have also affected Madang Province, where at least two people were reportedly killed in a landslide in the town of Naho Tawa.
Several roads were damaged by flash flooding with repairs underway. The Madang Provincial Government is seeking PGK98 million (USD29 million) in disaster assistance from the national authorities.
Since declaring a measles outbreak on 6 February, the number of cases continues to surge and the Department of Health has reported 12,736 cases of measles and 203 deaths nation-wide as of 24 February. According to the second joint situation report issued by the WHO and UNICEF, the overall risk is assessed as high due to the large number of cases, chronicly low routine immunisation coverage, and increased vaccination hesitancy. Fifty-seven per cent of measles cases are children under five years, with over 80 per cent of cases citing children are not vaccinated.
Armed conflict between ethnic armed groups reportedly broke out near villages and displacement sites in Shan State with civilian casualties. Between 16 and 21 February, eleven civilians including four children were injured and one man reportedly killed in Kyaukme, Namtu and Hsipaw townships due to the fighting.
Landmine incidents were also reported in Hsipaw, with one civilian killed and two injured. Approximately 1,900 people were displaced in Namtu and Hsipaw over the past week, bringing the cumulative number of people displaced in Shan State since January to more than 7,400.
1,900 people displaced by conflict
Fighting between the Myanmar Military and the Arakan Army (AA) continues in Rakhine State, with new clashes reported in Mrauk-U Township on 19 and 22 February. More than 800 people from Mrauk-U were reportedly displaced to Kyauktaw and other locations in Mrauk-U between 19 and 24 February. Since then, some 370 who were displaced to Kyauktaw have returned.
800 people displaced by conflict
On 23 February, heavy rains triggered floods and landslides in three districts in Jayapura City with up to 1.5 meters of water reported in parts of the city. Up to 1,300 households were affected with no reported casualties. Landak District in West Kalimantan was also affected by floods on 21 February. The water has now receded in most of the affected areas