BUREAU FOR DEMOCRACY, CONFLICT, AND HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE (DCHA)
OFFICE OF U.S. FOREIGN DISASTER ASSISTANCE (OFDA)
NOTE: The last fact sheet was dated March 21, 2007.
- According to the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC), the Government of Sri Lanka (GOSL) reported more than 32,000 registered internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Batticaloa District, Eastern Province, as of May 20. An estimated 24,000 IDPs remained in Mannar and Vavuniya districts, Northern Province.
- On May 14, the GOSL began the resettlement of IDPs to districts of origin, according to the Office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). As of May 29, an estimated 30,000 IDPs had returned to home villages in Batticaloa District. The GOSL expects to resettle approximately 90,000 IDPs in three phases by late 2007. UNHCR is monitoring the return of displaced persons.
- On May 30, international donors and organizations providing relief support in Sri Lanka released a set of guidelines for humanitarian and development assistance in the country. The guidelines outline the code of conduct and approach in providing assistance to the conflict-affected population.
|NUMBERS AT A GLANCE||
|IDPs in Batticaloa District||
|IASC C May 20, 2007|
|IDPs displaced by conflict since April 2006||
|UNHCR C April 16, 2007|
HUMANITARIAN FUNDING PROVIDED TO DATE (FY 2006 AND FY 2007)
USAID/OFDA Assistance to Sri Lanka
USAID/FFP1 Assistance to Sri Lanka $5,100,000
State/PRM2 Assistance to Sri Lanka $2,840,000
Total USAID and State Humanitarian Assistance to Sri Lanka $12,911,744
- Since early 2006, renewed violence between the GOSL and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) has displaced more than 300,000 people, according to UNHCR. In addition, more than 200,000 IDPs remain displaced from previous years of conflict or from the December 2004 tsunami.
- In late March, the USAID/DCHA Assistant Administrator traveled to Sri Lanka to review the humanitarian situation and the current response to the crisis. On June 2, the USAID/OFDA Director is traveling to Sri Lanka to discuss humanitarian protection and material assistance needs with the U.S. mission, GOSL officials and relief agencies.
- On May 9, U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Richard A. Boucher visited Jaffna District to review the current political and humanitarian situation.
- The USAID/OFDA South Asia regional office in Kathmandu, working closely with USAID/Sri Lanka, continues to monitor humanitarian conditions and identify assistance needs through regular assessment and monitoring trips by a USAID/OFDA regional advisor. In addition, a USAID/DCHA protection advisor is assessing the current conditions for IDPs in the country.
- With funding from USAID/OFDA, USAID/Sri Lanka is hiring a geographic information systems specialist to assist with humanitarian information management and reporting.
Humanitarian Access and IDP Assistance
- Recent violence in northern and eastern Sri Lanka, including Vavuniya and Batticaloa districts, continues to limit humanitarian access and delivery of relief supplies to IDPs. On May 18, the International Committee of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (ICRC) closed crossing points in Mannar and Vavuniya districts due to insecurity resulting from escalating violence between the GOSL and the LTTE. ICRC personnel resumed activities on May 30, after the GOSL and LTTE guaranteed the security of ICRC staff and civilians.
Sri Lanka Complex Emergency C June 1, 2007
- According to international media sources and international agencies, a significant number of returning IDPs in Batticaloa District are concerned about safety and security in their home villages. GOSL and UNHCR officials continue to monitor and report on the resettlement process.
- USAID/OFDA is providing additional funding to Save the Children/UK (SC/UK) to allow the expansion of ongoing protection activities and material assistance for conflict-affected families in northern and eastern Sri Lanka.
- According to assessments from the humanitarian community, returnees and IDPs in some areas face shortages of food assistance and livelihoods resources as well as other basic humanitarian goods and services, particularly in Jaffna District, Northern Province, due to difficulties in providing relief supplies.
- USAID/FFP continues to monitor food needs in collaboration with USAID/Sri Lanka and the U.N. World Food Program (WFP). USAID/FFP is funding WFPs Protracted Relief and Recovery Operations to assist IDPs and other vulnerable groups throughout the country.
USAID AND STATE HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE
- On August 11, 2006, U.S. Charg dAffaires James R. Moore declared a disaster due to the increasing conflict and resulting IDPs in Sri Lanka, and requested assistance from USAID/OFDA. On October 6, 2006, U.S. Ambassador Robert O. Blake renewed the disaster declaration and requested additional USAID/OFDA support for FY 2007.
- To date in FY 2007, USAID/OFDA has allocated more than $3.8 million to support nutrition, protection, logistics, coordination and information management activities, and water, sanitation, and hygiene services (WASH).
- State/PRM has contributed more than $1.6 million in FY 2007 to ICRC in Sri Lanka to fund emergency programs to facilitate the movements of conflict-affected individuals, restore family links, support WASH activities, and provide medical aid, shelter, and household items.
USAID AND STATE HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE TO SRI LANKA IN FY 2007 AND FY 2006
|Office for the
|Coordination and Information Management||Countrywide||
|SC/UK||Protection, Emergency Relief Supplies||Ampara, Batticaloa, Jaffna, and Trincomalee Districts||
|U.N. Childrens Fund
|Nutrition, Protection, WASH||Affected Areas||
|USAID||Coordination and Information Management||Countrywide||
|World Vision||Protection||Jaffna, Kilinochchi, Mannar, and Mullaitivu Districts||
|TOTAL USAID/OFDA (1) $3,871,744|
|WFP||6,710 MT of P.L.
480 Title II Emergency
|TOTAL USAID/FFP $5,100,000|
|ICRC||Emergency Relief Supplies, Health, Protection, Shelter, WASH||Countrywide||
|TOTAL STATE/PRM (2) $1,640,000|
|TOTAL USAID AND STATE HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE TO SRI LANKA IN FY 2007 $10,611,744|
|Mercy Corps||Emergency Relief Supplies, WASH||Trincomalee||
|UNICEF||Health, Nutrition, Protection, WASH||Affected Areas||
|TOTAL USAID/OFDA $1,100,000|
Protection, Shelter, WASH
|TOTAL STATE/PRM(3) $1,200,000|
|TOTAL USAID AND STATE HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE TO SRI LANKA IN FY 2006 $2,300,000|
(1) USAID/OFDA funding represents anticipated or actual obligated amounts as of June 1, 2007.
(2) In FY 2007, State/PRM has also provided $3.38 million to UNHCR to support regional programs that protect and assist refugees and IDPs in India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka.
(3 ) In FY 2006, State/PRM contributed $12.6 million to ICRC for activities in South Asia, including Sri Lanka, India, Nepal, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, and $4.5 million to UNHCR for programs in India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka.
PUBLIC DONATION INFORMATION
- The most effective way people can assist relief efforts is by making cash contributions to humanitarian organizations that are conducting relief operations. Information on organizations responding to the humanitarian situation in Sri Lanka can be found at www.reliefweb.int
- USAID encourages cash donations because they allow aid professionals to procure the exact items needed (often in the affected region); reduce the burden on scarce resources (such as transportation routes, staff time, warehouse space, etc.); can be transferred very quickly and without transportation costs; support the economy of the disaster-stricken region; and ensure culturally, dietary, and environmentally appropriate assistance.
More information can be found at:
- USAID: www.usaid.gov C Keyword: Donations
- The Center for International Disaster Information: www.cidi.org or (703) 276-1914
- Information on relief activities of the humanitarian community can be found at www.reliefweb.int
(1) USAIDs Office of Food for Peace
(2) U.S. Department of States Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration