Syrian Arab Republic: Aleppo - Situation Report No. 1 (1 December 2016) [EN/AR]
This report is produced by OCHA in collaboration with humanitarian partners. It was issued on 1 December 2016. It covers the period from 24 November to 30 November 2016. The next SitRep will be issued on 3 December 2016.
Hostilities intensified significantly since 24 November, resulting in the displacement of an estimated 31,500 people within Aleppo city and a further deterioration of the humanitarian situation in the remaining besieged neighborhoods.
The Government of Syria (GoS) regained control of several neighborhoods and civilian infrastructure in East Aleppo, including the Suleiman Al-Halabi water station. Syrian media reported that the rehabilitation of water power installations is on-going.
Reports have emerged of detention of some IDPs crossing into GoS held areas, while 45 civilians were reportedly killed by shelling on 30 November as they attempted to cross into West Aleppo.
Humanitarian actors are delivering a comprehensive response to the needs of the newly displaced in all areas they can access, and stand ready to assist civilians in besieged east Aleppo whenever access will be granted.
With the onset of winter, insufficient and inadequate shelter space is currently the biggest concern for humanitarian actors. In addition, the need for more food distribution, particularly hot meals, and ready to eat meals, addressing health concerns, especially among children, and increased protection requirements have been noted.
Additional WASH services, particularly the provision of WASH units, and winterization items are urgently needed in the IDP reception areas.
According to the Syrian Department of Health, from 23 till 29 November, 26 people (including 9 women and 9 children) were killed and 279 injured as a result of indiscriminate shelling on Western Aleppo.
Of those who had fled, at least 200 patients have been referred to hospitals for further treatment.
The regained control by Government forces of the northern neighborhoods of east Aleppo (i.e.Masaken Hanano, Al-Entharat, Jabal Al-Badro, Al-Sheikh Najjar, Bustan Al-Basha, Al-Sakhour, Haydariyeh, Sheikh Khader, Sheikh Fares, Al-Basel, Al-Hellok) between 24 and 30 November has prompted the displacement of an estimated 31,500 people to multiple locations:
Some 18,000 individuals were displaced to Jibreen in the eastern part of Aleppo, under GoS control.
Some 8,500 individuals were displaced to Sheikh Maqsoud, inhabited and controlled by a Kurdish population majority.
Some 5,000 individuals were displaced within besieged east Aleppo.
According to UN estimates, 30,000 to 40,000 people lived in areas taken by Government forces over the last days in north-east Aleppo. A UN mission to the recently retaken neighborhood of Masakin Hanano on 29 November found the area empty of civilians.
An estimated 8,500 people fled to the neighbourhood of Sheikh Maqsoud. Meanwhile, up to 18,000 people fled eastern Aleppo to western parts of the city. Among them, 8,000 people are accommodated in the Jibreen collective centre, another 3,000 in the neighbouring cotton factory, and the rest with family members.
Reports have emerged that some people trying to cross into West Aleppo have been shot at, resulting in deaths and injuries.On 30 November, local sources reported the death of 45 people from shelling in the Jub Al-Quby neighbourhood of east Aleppo. These people were reportedly on their way to the Al-Sha’ar neighbourhood to attempt to cross into GoS-held territories. Reports indicate that 15 women and 15 children were among the dead. Another incident was reported on 29 November when airstrikes reportedly killed 25 people in the Bab Al-Nayrab neighbourhood. As civilians have no means of transportation other than walking puts them at great risk of death and injury as long as indiscriminate shelling and airstrikes continue.
There are reports that some men and boys have been detained when crossing while some other IDPs reported that they had their documents confiscated upon crossing into GoS held territory, and that NSAGs have sought to prevent civilians from leaving Eastern Aleppo.
Those who passed into GoS-controlled areas were brought by bus to Jibreen for screening and after that accommodated in pre-existing shelters, a makeshift IDP shelter in a cotton factory (Al-Mahalej), or with family members and acquaintances living in west Aleppo.
Some 8,000 IDPs are accommodated in safe and previously rehabilitated shelter units in Jibreen; however, the units are now occupied at maximum capacity. The UN is currently seeking GoS approval to dispatch tents to the site to accommodate additional IDP families. As of 29 November, the GoS authorities made the Mahalej cotton factory in Jibreen available to IDPs, but the site is not yet prepared to serve as a shelter. The cotton factory, initially housing some 10,000 IDPs, currently accommodates an estimated 3,000 following heavy rains. Once properly equipped, the cotton factory has the capacity to accommodate 15,000. All other IDPs are accommodated with family or relatives. The cotton factory, however, urgently needs to be winterized, properly cleaned and separated by partitions or setup as a tented site to serve as an adequate shelter facility. As a rapid response, the UN suggests erecting tents inside the cotton fabric and discussions are ongoing with authorities in this regard. On 30 November reports emerged of newly arrived families leaving the site, unwilling to settle under the current circumstances in Jibreen. Consequently, the Governor of Aleppo has instructed new arrivals to be redirected to Hanano (one of the neighborhoods recently retaken) starting 1 December.
In the interim, the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) and local partners supported by the UN are providing NFIs, nutrition supplies, such as Plumpy Doz, and hot meals through a collective kitchen that is run by a local WFP partner to all those displaced in collective shelters. Furthermore, mobile clinics and medical teams have been dispatched to respond to the medical needs of the new arrivals. For example, all people in Jibreen and the cotton factory are receiving hot meals. In addition, 125,000 WASH items (i.e. hygiene materials etc.), 11,000 winter clothing kits have been distributed to date and preventive nutritional treatment was provided to 1,400 children under 5.
The 18,000 newly displaced individuals from East Aleppo have joined some 32,000 people displaced in July/August 2016 from the 1070 and Riyadah Complexes in West Aleppo, and 24,000 people,displaced in November 2016 from Muniyan, Dahiet Al-Asaad, New Aleppo, the 3,000 Apartments area and Hamdaniyeh in West Aleppo. The total estimated number of IDPs in West Aleppo has now reached 400,000. An estimated 77,000 of them reside in unfinished buildings or collective shelters.
In Sheikh Maqsoud, the local SARC branch has registered 8,500 IDPs who are currently hosted across four different collective shelters. SARC also distributed assistance to all newly displaced individuals, including food rations and NFIs. A more robust response is needed through the provision of hot meals and protection services. Reportedly, IDPs who were displaced to Sheikh Maqsoud underwent very thorough screening processes by both Kurdish and GoS authorities.
Little to no assistance could be extended to the 5,000 IDPs who were displaced within East Aleppo where the ability of humanitarian actors to respond is severely limited by lack of access with resources inside East Aleppo nearly depleted following almost 5 months without humanitarian deliveries. Medical facilities have mostly shut down with only a few operating at absolute minimum capacity. Following the GoS takeover of Al-Sakhour neighborhood, only one hospital with very limited trauma treatment capacity remains available. Sources inside East Aleppo indicate that with fuel for ambulances running low, some wounded individuals are rushed to the medical facilities on vegetable carriages. WHO’s partners have identified 400 cases in Eastern Aleppo requiring urgent medical evacuations.
On 28 November, Suleiman al-Halabi pumping station, which pumps to both Eastern and Western Aleppo downtown and Tishreen sub-stations, has come under GoS control. As per initial reports, the pumping station’s essential equipment remained intact and had resumed normal operations with UNICEF-provided fuel, benefiting approximately 1.2 million people in West Aleppoand parts of East Aleppo. Bab al Nairab pumping station is working via electricity, feeding East Aleppo.
According to the Department of Health, from 23 till 29 November, 26 people (including 9 women and 9 children) were killed and 279 injured as a result of indiscriminate shelling on Western Aleppo.