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Sudan: Conflict – Flash Update #18 West Darfur As of 29 April 2021[EN/AR]

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Situation Report
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KEY POINTS

  • The security situation in Ag Geneina town while stable is tense and unpredictable.

  • The government deployed this week a reinforcement of 2,000 Sudan Armed Forces and police.

  • The top needs of the newly displaced population are food, non-food essential supplies, protection, shelter and water.

  • Humanitarian organisations continue to scale up operations, as of 29 April more than 104,000 people had received food, about 65,000 people accessed healthcare services, and 2,000 people received non-food supplies in Ag Geneina.

  • The situation in gathering sites in Ag Geneina is critical because of insecurity, overcrowding and unsanitary conditions.

  • Additional funding is needed to meet the new humanitarian needs.

  • The operational plan covering January to June for 250,000 people is costed at US$65 million.

SITUATION

The security situation in Ag Geneina town is stable, but tense and unpredictable. Over the past few days, the Government of Sudan deployed a 2,000-strong force of the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the Central Reserve Police (CRP) in Ag Geneina and surrounding areas to ensure security and order, according to the Ag Geneina police office. The CRP has established 35 checkpoints in the Al Jabal area and SAF is manning 15 checkpoints in the Krinding area as a pre-emptive measure for acts of inter-communal violence.

An inter-agency assessment mission visited the Al Jabal area in Ag Geneina on 29 April to assess the needs of returnees. There have been reports of some returns to sections of the Al Jebel area from a number of gathering sites in Ag Geneina.

On 28 April, protection sector with its partners conducted protection monitoring in Markaz Elmouageen, El Borhania Square and Ministry of Social Affairs gathering sites in Ag Geneina town hosting 1,800 people displaced from Al Jabal blocks, Moli and Gokar areas of south-west Ag Geneina. During the focus group discussions, the IDPs highlighted absence of security forces inside/outside of the gathering sites and aired concerns over their physical safety due to fear of new attacks. Food, ES/NFIs, health, nutrition for women and children, WASH, and other basic needs were mentioned as their immediate priority needs.

Also on 28 April, protection monitoring started at the Sudanese-Chadian border areas as well as Sirba, Jebel Moon and Kulbus localities. Assessment of shelter needs for returnees in Burtango, Njyoro and Gokar villages (Ag Geneina locality) has resumed this week. Reportedly, there are approximately 600 families (an estimated 3,000 people) who were displaced in January 2021 conflict that returned to those villages.

Humanitarian partners continue scaling up response in Ag Geneina town. As of 29 April, about 104,500 people received food assistance. Health sector partners reached about 65,000 affected people through 35 health facilities. Of these health facilities, 30 (21 static and nine mobile) are in Ag Geneina town and five are in areas outside of the town. With around 2,800 consultations provided per day, the most reported cases are respiratory infections, diarrhoea, malaria, skin and eye infections. No reports of COVID-19 cases were reported among the displaced population.

On 27 April, partners distributed emergency shelter and non-food (NFI) kits to 2,000 people in two gathering points in Ag Geneina. This brings the total number of people who received non-food supplies since January 2021 to about 64,000. More partners are needed to distribute NFIs from UNHCR stock to scale up the shelter/non-food items (S/NFI) response.

Some partners report that they need further assurances of safety and security from the authorities, given recent incidents of targeting humanitarian supplies and assets, to scale up the response.

Partners reported shortages of funds and possible suspension of support to several health points. Existing capacities are not sufficient to cope with the needs. With the rainy season approaching, scaling up - given current capacity limitations - can prove a major challenge.

According to the International Organization for Migration (IOM) data, in less than four months of 2021 close to 237,000 people were displaced by conflict in Darfur, more than four times the 53,000 people who were conflict-displaced in all of 2020 creating a significant increase in new needs. Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP) partners need emergency funding to effectively respond to these new needs.

As of 29 April, humanitarian funding is US$296.6 million, including $197.8 million for the HRP (10.2 per cent covered). Humanitarian pooled funding to Ag Geneina is $6.5 million. This consists of a Sudan Humanitarian Fund (SHF) Emergency Rapid Response Mechanism allocation of $300,000 and Reserve for Emergencies allocation of $1 million. Both allocations are for health, protection, shelter and household supplies, and WASH interventions. A Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) allocation of $5 million supports education in emergencies, health, livelihoods, protection (including GBV), S/NFIs, and WASH. The CERF-funding recipients - UN agencies - have received the funding enabling the scale-up of the response in Ag Geneina. The START Network provided $300,000 for WASH activities in January.

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