Rapid Emergency Assessment and Coordination Team (REACT) Murghob, Gorno-Badakhshan, Tajikistan: 7.2 Magnitude Earthquake Situation Update No. 6 (as of 21 December 2015)



  • According to initial results of the inter-agency needs assessment, immediate needs of many affected population have been primarily met.

  • As severe weather is forecasted to continue in Gorno-Badakhshan until early April, sustained relief assistance including winterization of temporary shelters are priority.

  • Government, non-governmental and international organizations, including UN have scaled up response.

  • As of 15 December, local authorities of Rushon district predict Rushon-Bartang road to be cleared from rocks in the coming days as weather permits.

  • Number of partially or fully damaged houses decreased significantly since first reported and as of 18 December stands at 660 according to Committee of Emergency Situations.

Situation Overview

On 17 December, an assessment team composed of REACT Rapid Response Team members (UNDP and UNICEF) and UNDP Damage assessment and Early Recovery and OCHA coordination experts deployed to GornoBadakhshan to support local response. The team is providing support to local partners; in particular, UN’s WFP, FOCUS and National Red Crescent Society branch with rapid inter-agency needs assessment and enhancing overall coordination with national and local authorities.

As of 19 December, according to initial inter-agency findings from Gorno-Badakhshan, immediate relief needs of the most vulnerable affected population have been primarily addressed through the resources of both national, international actors and some private sector. In addition, the initial needs analysis indicate that food, coal, winter clothing, hygiene items, cooking stoves and sanitation facilities are expected to be continued priority needs due to lack of livelihoods opportunities for affected population and lengthy severe weather conditions in Gorno Badakhshan.

One of the main challenges continue to be the lack of access to the most affected villages in Bartang Valley. The authorities of Rushon district noted significant improvements in cleaning the roads in the Valley, which is expected to complete in the coming days in case of no heavy snowfall. As of 15 December, road to the most isolated villages of Bartang Valley has been cleared up to 125 kilometers, which makes two third of the total distance.

There are reported cases of lack of mutually agreed clear standard operating procedures on modalities to store and consequently deliver international aid through the Agency for State Material Reserves. A meeting is planned in the coming days with the representatives of the State Reserve to address these challenges.

The Committee of Emergency Situations (CoES) shared a damage report with REACT Secretariat and as of 18 December, total of destroyed and damaged houses stand at 660. As of 18 December, some 560 people have been evacuated (254 children – age to be identified) to Rushon district at school and pre-school facilities. On 18 December, REACT’s Rapid Response team (FOCUS, OCHA, UNDP, WFP) with local authorities have visited some of the temporary shelters. Initial findings indicate that while urgent needs have been met, there is a need to winterize these temporary shelters to ensure adequate protection against winter conditions. International Organization for Migration has deployed shelter-engineering experts to assess the current conditions of the displaced in temporary shelters and provide recommendations on how to improve these conditions.

As of 18 December, CoES through its monitoring system in Usoi dam reports that the dam is stable and does not pose any immediate threat of outburst.

In addition to houses, also critical infrastructure - including roads, medical points and hydro-power station and schools - have been damaged. CoES has made available the below information on these damages at district level.
It includes information on livestock that has been killed.