The operational environment in Somalia remained fluid and complex throughout November. In addition to the prolonged conflict and insecurity, as well as the triple threat of Covid-19, floods and desert locusts, on 23 November, Somalia was struck by Cyclone Gati. It was the strongest storm ever to make landfall in the country, leading to vast material damage and affecting an estimated 180,000 people in Bari region. UNHCR, in addition to its regular support and assistance, supported displaced families affected by the storm.
The operational context in Somalia remained fluid and complex throughout November 2020. Access remained restricted by conflict and insecurity and was further compounded by challenges associated with the outbreak of Covid-19.
Cyclone Gati, one of the worst cyclonic storms, struck Somalia on 23 November, destroying roads, houses, fishing boats, communication masts, and power lines, as well as resulting in the death of at least eight fishermen. Authorities estimate that 180,000 people were affected by the cyclone, with 42,000 displaced from their homes. The cyclone, which brought along heavy rains with above average strong winds, mainly affected Bossaso and Hafun regions in the north-eastern Puntland State, also causing flooding in the UNHCR Field Office in Bossaso. Site assessment and beneficiary selection for cyclone-affected families took place, in cooperation with partners and other UN agencies.
An increase in the movement of Yemeni (25) and Syrian (12) refugees was reported in Banadir region during the reporting period. UNHCR collaborated closely with local authorities to conduct timely registration and to avoid backlogs from previous arrivals.
Heavy rains destroyed shelters made of sticks and fabrics of some 1,051 IDPs living in Kahda and Daynile Districts of Banadir, Mogadishu, according to partners’ reports. The most affected PoCs are elders, persons with disabilities, women and children. Rains washed away latrines and valuable household materials for persons of concern (PoCs), including NFI items. Assessment of needs was initiated in November.