Yemen: Escalating Conflict – Western Coast Situation Report No. 3 (as of 10 March 2017) [EN/AR]
Conflict along the western coast of Taizz Governorate escalated in January 2017 and has continued over the last week, including in several areas adjacent to coastal districts and near the southern border of Al Hudaydah Governorate.
As of 10 March, the fighting had led to more than 48,000 people being displaced from across Taizz Governorate. The majority are from Al Mukha and Dhubab districts in the south-west. Nearly all displaced people are sheltering in more secure areas of Taizz Governorate (73 per cent) or neighbouring Al Hudaydah Governorate (20 per cent).
Humanitarian partners have provided direct, in-kind relief to nearly 120,000 people, including IDPs, host communities and residents of affected areas. In addition, partners are supporting critical services through assistance to local water networks and health facilities, as well as offering protection.
Access to the most affected areas of Taizz remains challenging due to ongoing clashes and movement restrictions imposed by parties to the conflict.
Assistance in some sectors has concentrated mainly on Al Hudaydah, with further scale-up planned in Taizz.
Military operations along the western coast of Taizz continued this week, reportedly extending to Maqbanah and Mawza districts and moving closer to the southern border of Al Hudaydah Governorate. Reports on front-line military developments frequently differ, indicating that the military situation remains fluid.
As of 9 March, the Task Force on Population Movements (TFPM) estimates that 48,408 people had been displaced from across Taizz Governorate since the offensive began in January 2017. About 62 per cent of these people have fled the most severely affected districts of Al Mukha and Dhubab. A large majority of internally displaced persons (IDPs) have moved to more secure areas within Taizz Governorate (73 per cent), with a significant number sheltering in southern Al Hudaydah Governorate (20 per cent). Considerably smaller numbers of IDPs have arrived in Abyan, Al Dhale’e, Aden, Ibb, Lahj and Shabwah governorates (7 per cent spread across these locations). These figures represent verified displacement; actual figures may be higher.
Partners have been quick to assess needs on the ground, providing evidence for the immediate response (see sector summaries below). At least ten localized assessments have been completed in different areas, in addition to TFPM emergency displacement tracking. As of 10 March, partners had reached nearly 120,000 IDPs, host community members and other affected people with some kind of direct, in-kind assistance – mainly relief food, nonfood items (NFIs), emergency shelter or hygiene kits. Partners were also supporting health facilities and water networks to ensure availability of these essential services where possible. Protection activities – mainly mine risk education and psychosocial support – were also under way in affected areas.
Access challenges persist mainly in Taizz Governorate, where active clashes and movement restrictions imposed by parties to the conflict have in some cases hindered partners’ ability to deliver aid. Humanitarian partners are finalizing a contingency plan that will allow rapid scale-up of assistance in the event of further escalation, especially in Al Hudaydah Governorate.