• WFP dispatched food assistance for 2.7 million people in all 14 Syrian governorates under the February cycle, achieving 90 percent of the monthly plan.
• Despite the United Nations Security Council Resolution 2401, which established a ceasefire, the security situation continued to worsen across Syria, particularly in Eastern Ghouta and the north-west.
• Fighting between government forces and non-state armed groups in Idleb governorate has resulted in the displacement of about 385,000 people since December.
Security Council Resolution 2401
• In light of the deteriorating security situation across Syria, the United Nations Security Council unanimously adopted Resolution 2401 on 24 February 2018, which called for a nationwide ceasefire for 30 days to allow humanitarian supplies to reach people in need, especially those living in besieged and hard-to-reach areas. Furthermore, the resolution demanded unimpeded and sustained access each week for humanitarian convoys. The ceasefire, however, did not apply to military activities against ISIL and Al-Nusra and their associates.
Situation in Eastern Ghouta in Rural Damascus
• Despite the passing of Resolution 2401, the humanitarian and security situation in Eastern Ghouta continued to deteriorate. At least 900 people have reportedly been killed and another 3,000 people wounded. About 30,000 people were reportedly displaced within Eastern Ghouta due to the ongoing military activity. Amid the worsening security situation, WFP has reached Eastern Ghouta twice through two cross-line inter-agency convoys, delivering food assistance for 7,200 people in Nashabiyeh in mid-February and for 27,500 people in Douma in early March.
WFP’s operations in North-eastern Syria
• In north-eastern Syria, WFP’s operations resumed in early February, following a temporary agreement between the Government of Syria and the Kurdish Self-Administration for the registration of NGOs in the area. The agreement will be in place for two months, and discussions are currently under way to identify a more sustainable solution. The United Nations continues its advocacy efforts to ensure sustainable humanitarian assistance can be provided in the affected Al-Hasakeh, Deir Ezzor and Ar-Raqqa governorates, where WFP assists more than 350,000 people with food and nutrition assistance on a monthly basis.
Security Situation in North-western Syria
• In north-western Syria, conflict escalated on several fronts. Fighting between government forces and non-state armed groups (NSAG) in Idleb governorate have resulted in the displacement of 385,000 people since December (some with secondary displacements). Moreover, fighting intensified between different NSAGs in late February, affecting Idleb, western Aleppo and northern Hama. WFP’s operations have been significantly impacted by these developments which caused the suspension of food distributions to 72,500 people in south Idleb and north-west Hama, as well as temporary disruptions to distributions in camps in northern Idleb. In response to unfolding events, WFP provided emergency food assistance for 30,000 people in Idleb and Aleppo.
• In parallel, the Turkish offensive in Afrin district has led to a deteriorating humanitarian and security situation, with an estimated 35,000-50,000 people displaced within the district since 20 January. Some 5,500 people have arrived in Aleppo city and surroundings. WFP, in coordination with partners, provided ready-to-eat (RTE) rations for 4,200 people, while the remaining 1,300 people were assisted by other humanitarian actors.
Security Situation in Southern Syria
• In southern Syria, the security situation deteriorated in mid-February as ISIL-affiliated armed groups based in south-west Dar’a initiated a massive ground offensive against non-state armed groups with the aim to expand their control in the area. Fighting caused the displacement of thousands of people from Hit in southwest Dar’a into surrounding villages. In response, WFP provided RTE rations for 3,100 people in Amoriyeh, Zayzun, and Tafas.