This report is produced by OCHA Syria in collaboration with humanitarian partners. It covers the period from 24 August - 5 September, 2021.
As of 6 September, a conditional ceasefire is reportedly in place pending implementation of previously agreed terms between parties; the situation is reportedly relatively calm as of 7 September.
Over 36,000 civilians remain displaced, of whom almost 1,300 people are living in seven collective shelters.
The humanitarian situation in Dar’a Al-Balad remains concerning, with ongoing reports of limited access to basic food and services, including water and health.
The humanitarian community continues to advocate with all parties to facilitate rapid and unimpeded passage of humanitarian assistance to all affected areas and communities, including Dar’a Al-Balad.
55,000 people in Dar’a Al-Balad
36,424 internally displaced
1,268 living in collective shelters
21,000 people reached with food assistance
On 5 September, following reports of multiple breakdowns in ceasefire agreements and ongoing hostilities, further reports indicate a proposal was made to reinstate the previous reconciliation agreement. The deadline for all parties to agree to this proposal was reported as 6 September; as of 7 September, the situation on the ground remains relatively calm with no major outbreaks in hostilities reported.
Prior, on 29 August, heavy shelling in Tafas city and other areas in western Dar’a triggered another round of civilian displacement into areas in Al Yarmouk Basin, south-west of Dar’a near the Jordanian border. Some public infrastructures also reportedly sustained damage. Further, on 30 August, Al Shifa Hospital and the National Hospital of Dar’a were hit by mortars, reportedly resulting in minor structural damage, and a school in Dar’a Al-Balad was also reportedly damaged. On 31 August, a temporary ceasefire was reportedly agreed to and was followed by a period of relative calm, however, by 3 September ceasefire negotiations had collapsed and hostilities resumed within Dar’a Al-Balad until the morning of 5 September.
To date, 7,746 families (36,424 people) have been displaced, the majority of whom are living with host families while 1,268 people are living in five schools and two mosques converted into temporary collective shelters.
As hostilities have continued, humanitarian conditions in Dar’a Al-Balad have worsened, including severe disruption to critical commodities and basic services, including electricity, water supply and Internet. Food shortages, including staples such as flour, also reportedly continue. Only limited medical services are available inside Dar’a Al-Balad with reports of shortages of medical supplies at the hospital and extremely high prices in the local market. The disruption to the supply chain has further affected the price of essential items in the local markets.
Access into and out of Dar’a Al-Balad also continues to be restricted except for 28 August when a few families reportedly left for Dar’a Al-Mahatta through Saraya crossing points. Protection partners are reporting that movement is further restricted in various parts of the governorate due to the presence of explosive hazards, some of which are reportedly around public infrastructure such as schools, hospitals and community centers.
With the school year scheduled to start in September, local authorities have indicated initial plans to relocate IDPs temporarily living in the five schools to other areas. While the UN understands that such plans are yet to be finalized, a stadium with the capacity for 50 tents is being prepared as one alternative site.
Despite ongoing efforts to deliver assistance to the collective shelters, reports indicate concerning health and nutrition conditions. To date, at least five cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in two collective shelters, and partners report high rates of malnutrition. Partners further report protection concerns, with the most vulnerable especially women, children, the elderly, people with special needs and Palestine refugees exposed to multiple protection risks including family separation and unaccompanied children.
- UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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