Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka: Jaffna, Kilinochchi, Mullaithivu, Mannar, Vavuniya, Trincomalee and Batticaloa districts Situation Report # 157

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Situation Report
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11 December – 18 December 2008

IDP situation as reported this week by GAs

Displacement after April 2006

Location
Number of Families
Number of Individuals
Jaffna
21,591 displaced before Dec 2005
6010 displaced after Jan 2006
73,672 displaced before Dec 2005
20,205 displaced after Jan 2006
Kilinochchi
124,369*
Mullaitivu
83,800*
Vavuniya
3,229
10,805
Mannar
2,937
9,084
Trincomalee
1,389
4,647
Batticaloa
2,225
8,373

*Figures as of September 2008. These are presently being reviewed. Source – UNHCR, Government Agents Offices Kilinochchi and Mulaithivu

JAFFNA DISTRICT

Situation update

- Heavy rains continued to affect Jaffna District throughout much of the reporting period. Although in most areas the flood water caused by cyclone Nisha had receded by the beginning of December, some low lying areas were still affected. Electricity, telecommunication and transport systems have been restored. Essential commodities were available in the market, but market prices of vegetables are five times higher than before the cyclone hit. The usual one hour of power cut in the evening and the unreliable mobile phone coverage persists.

- The security situation remained tense across Jaffna District during the reporting period. Artillery shelling by the SLA continued both day and night towards the FDLs. Heavy fighting especially in the areas near the FDL in the Muhamalai / Kilali region is ongoing. The curfew still remains in place from 21:00 to 04:30 daily.

Displacement/Returns

- As of 16 December, 155 persons (58 families) had arrived in Jaffna from the Vanni. They are now accommodated at the Kopay Teachers' Training College. Freedom of movement remains a concern as the IDPs are not allowed to leave the camp although family members are allowed to visit them. NGOs and UN agencies have provided basic NFRIs. UNHCR, UNICEF, WFP and ICRC have been granted access to visit the IDPs.

Sector Developments/Gaps

- NFRIs – Based on the rapid assessments undertaken in the immediate aftermath of the cyclone, and in consultation with District Secretariats, NGOs as well as UN agencies continued to distribute NFRIs to families identified as the most vulnerable in each DS Division. NFRIs were pooled from a number of UN agencies and NGOs. 11,320 families across the peninsula benefited from the distribution. Most stock piles are now depleted and need to be replenished.

- Water and Sanitation (WASH) – The WASH cluster in Jaffna is coordinating WASH activities such as cleaning of wells. The cyclone that hit Jaffna on 26 November caused contamination of many wells with surface water. The quality of drinking water is therefore of concern. All water purification tablets and chlorine that agencies had in stock have been distributed.