$1.79B REQUIRED TO RESPOND TO 3.82 MILLION PEOPLE ACROSS 17 COUNTRIES
REGIONAL: VENEZUELAN MIGRANTS & REFUGEES
The R4V Inter-Agency Coordination Platform for Refugees and Migrants from Venezuela launched the 2022 Regional Refugee and Migrant Response Plan (RMRP) for US$1.79 billion to respond to the increasing needs of 3.82 million Venezuelan migrants and refugees, Colombian returnees and host communities across 17 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean.
The 3.82 million people targeted (out of some 8.4 million in need) is more than half a million more people than the 3.3 million people targeted (out of 7.2 million in need) in the 2021 RMRP.
This funding requirement is a 24 per cent increase from the $1.44 billion required for the 2021 RMRP, which was funded by 45 per cent for about $648 million, indicating growing needs amid the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, growing unemployment and poverty in host communities and serious protection risks related to irregular statuses.
The RMRP aims to further strengthen national and regional responses, by supporting critical humanitarian services, including health, shelter, food, water, sanitation and hygiene interventions in host countries.
CENTRAL AMERICA & MEXICO: REFUGEES & ASYLUM SEEKERS
1M+ PEOPLE IN CENTRAL AMERICA & MEXICO LEFT THEIR COUNTRY DURING 2021
Per the Comprehensive Regional Protection and Solutions Framework’s (MIRPS, per its Spanish acronym) annual report, more than 1 million people left the 7 MIRPS countries (Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador,
Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico and Panama) during 2021. The report cites chronic violence, climate shocks and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic as key drivers that have prompted a 19.4 per cent increase in asylum seekers and refugees in the sub-region. The first half of 2021 saw an 18.5 per cent increase in asylum seekers and a 26.5 per cent increase in refugees in the compared to the same period in 2020.
In terms of internal displacement, MIRPS documents some 1.06 million internally displaced people (IDPs) in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras.Mexico and Costa Rica host the vast majority of both groups at 172,600 and 105,200, respectively, as well as receiving the highest number of new asylum requests with 51,600 and 13,800. The growth in asylum requests in Mexico from 70,000 in 2019 to 123,000 in 2021 indicates it is increasingly becoming a country of destination, especially among Haitians.
REGIONAL: HUMANITARIAN ACCESS
The Assessment Capacities Project’s (ACAPS) recently-published Humanitarian Access Overview references access issues in several countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, as assessed based on access of people in need to aid, access of humanitarian agencies and physical, environmental and security constraints.
In terms of absolute rankings, the Overview places Haiti, Honduras, Mexico and Nicaragua as countries with high constraints, behind Colombia (very high constraints) and Venezuela (extreme constraints). Relative to the mid-year Overview issued in July 2021, access has deteriorated in Colombia, Trinidad and Tobago and Venezuela, remained stable in Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico and Nicaragua, and improved in Brazil, Costa Rica and Peru. The Overview cites the presence of armed criminal groups in Honduras and Mexico and deteriorating conditions in Nicaragua as key factors in their humanitarian access status.
PAHO warns that while the Omicron variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus has thus far only been detected in Argentina,
Brazil, Chile, Cuba and Mexico as of 8 December, it is only a matter of time before it spreads to more countries.
PAHO notes that declining cases in most of Central America and in Ecuador, Chile and Argentina are encouraging, but that the arrival of the new variant should prompt scaled-up short-term vigilance while researchers continue to learn more about Omicron’s behaviour and potential risk for Latin America and the Caribbean, already the hardest-hit region by the global pandemic.
At present, some 56 per cent of all people in the region are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, yet 20 countries have yet to reach WHO’s year-end goal of 40 per cent coverage, with as many as six countries unlikely to meet the target at their current pace.
- UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
- To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.