Asia and the Pacific: Weekly Regional Humanitarian Snapshot (9 - 15 January 2018)

from UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Published on 15 Jan 2018


Mayon Volcano, in Albay Province 300km southeast of Manila, erupted on 13 January ejecting ash and sulphur fumes. Further eruptions followed on 14 January prompting the Philippine Institute for Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) to raise Mayon’s alert to Level-3, meaning a possible hazardous eruption may occur within days. The provincial disaster management office has evacuated residents from the municipalities of Camalig, Guinobatan, and Malilipot living within a six-kilometer danger zone. More than 12,000 people are currently staying in 10 evacuation centers. The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) field office, together with the provincial and municipal governments, are providing aid items to affected people and emergency medical teams have been activated.


A strong 6.0-magnitude earthquake struck on 12 January at a depth of 10km and with an epicenter 40km west-northwest of Phyu in Bago Region.
It was followed by several after-shocks, according to the Myanmar Department of Meteorology and Hydrology (DMH). No casualties or major damage has been reported in the area, which is sparsely populated. Four more earthquakes between 3.9 and 5 magnitude have been recorded in Yangon and Bago regions by DMH on 13-15 January, some of which were felt in Yangon and in northern Thailand.


On 15 January 2018, Mt. Agung erupted again, sending ash up to 2,500 meters into the air, on the northeast side of the volcano. A six-kilometer danger zone remains in place and as of 14 January almost 50,000 people evacuated from their homes are being hosted in 299 sites.


Following the eruption of the volcano on Kadovar Island which began on 5 January 2018, the entire population of Kadovar island (591 people) has been evacuated to neighbouring Brup Brup Island (population 1,400). Due to the influx of people, there is an immediate need for food, water, shelter and clothing. The Prime Minister’s Office is supporting the provincial government to provide 2,000 people with food and water. Due to the risk of a tsunami from the ongoing eruption and the potential for a further eruption on neighbouring Biem Island, the Provincial Government is planning to evacuate the entire population of Kadovar, Brup Brup and Biem islands (up to 4,000 people) to a site on mainland East Sepik.


Cold weather in Bangladesh has resulted in at least 34 deaths as of 10 January. Recorded temperatures are the lowest since 1968, dipping to 2.6 degrees Celsius. Northern and central regions have been particularly affected, with deaths as a result of cold-related illnesses. The Government is providing emergency food and blankets in affected districts.

34 people killed

As of 14 January, 655,500 Rohingya refugees are reported to have arrived in Cox’s Bazar since 25 August 2017. The majority of these new arrivals – 548,000 people – are living in the Kutupalong Expansion site. The number of arrivals remains steady with no significant influx over the past several weeks. As of 11 January, the Bangladeshi Immigration and Passports Department has registered 971,627 refugees through biometric registration.

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