Philippines + 3 more

Asia and the Pacific: Weekly Regional Humanitarian Snapshot (14 - 20 January 2020)

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PHILIPPINES

Alert level-4 remains raised over Taal Volcano a week after its eruption of steam and ash prompted the Government to evacuate communities within a 14-km radius from the volcano’s main crater. Recent activity includes a steady steam emission and infrequent weak explosions that generated ash plumes 500 to 1,000 meters tall and dispersed ash southwest of the main crater, according to authorities. While the volcano is exhibiting infrequent activity, a larger eruption has not been ruled out by authorities. As of 20 January, more than 215,000 people are affected, of whom more than 112,000 people are being assisted in over 400 evacuation centres and nearly 70,000 people are with host families in Batangas and Cavite provinces in Region IV-A.1

215,000 people affected

MYANMAR

On 9 January, over 115 people have arrived in Sittwe from Myebon Township as hostilities have escalated in the area. Later, on 14 January, the Rakhine State Government imposed new restrictions to access the Township, by both national and international humanitarian actors, making it now a total of eight townships (out of 17), where humanitarian access to the affected areas remains a challenge. In Myebon over 3,800 people urgently need humanitarian assistance and protection services. Some 3,000 IDPs in the Mrauk-U displacement site face challenges to access clear water, as existing water sources are reportedly drying up, risking potential health-related issues among the most vulnerable.

PAKISTAN

Communities in Balochistan and Pakistan Administered Kashmir (PAK) and Gilgit Baltistan faced an unexpected heavy spell of rain/snowfall and avalanches last week. More than 105 people have died and over 96 are injured, and an estimated 1,295 houses are damaged. Many remote villages are cut off, without fuel, electricity and with extremely limited access. The Government reports an urgent need for food items, winterized tents, warm clothing, blankets, in addition to heavy machinery for clearing snow from the roads, generators and dewatering pumps to remove water from shallow areas. Rescue efforts by Provincial Disaster Management Authorities (PDMAs) and district administration are currently ongoing. The Government and local partners have distributed food and non-food items in the affected areas. The Government has not formally requested for international support and is responding to the situation. The government launched a rapid needs assessment, with humanitarian agencies who are supplementing the government-led response, with existing stocks.

AFGHANISTAN

Heavy snowfall and rain continue to impact civilians in southern and western Afghanistan. In 2020, some 1,170 people were affected. Harsh weather conditions resulted in road closures interrupting the delivery of humanitarian assistance in Badghis province. Ongoing winterisation assistance reached tens of thousands of people in need since late last year including 68,000 internally displaced people in Hirat and Ghor provinces.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.