Secretary-General's latest report
The UN Secretary-General's quarterly report to the Security Council released on 6 December 2013 provides an update of UNAMA's activities since 6 September 2013, listed below. For a full copy of the latest report, click here.
V. Humanitarian assistance
34. Between 1 August and 31 October, 7,097 refugees voluntarily repatriated to Afghanistan. Of those, 5,108 went from Pakistan, 1,957 from the Islamic Republic of Iran and the remainder from other neighbouring countries. This brought to 36,194 the number of returned refugees assisted by the United Nations for the first 10 months of 2013, a drop of 51 per cent compared to 2012. On 18 and 19 September, the third Quadripartite Steering Committee meeting was held in Islamabad, attended by representatives of the Governments of Afghanistan, the Islamic Republic of Iran and Pakistan and the United Nations. The parties agreed on the development of a joint resource mobilization strategy.
35. Between 1 August and 31 October, the Internally Displaced Persons Task Force, co-chaired by the Ministry of Refugees and Repatriation and the United Nations, recorded a total of 18,500 persons displaced owing to the conflict. This brought the total for the first 10 months of 2013 to 112,998, out of an overall total of 620,000. In this quarter, the highest levels of displacement were in Wardak, Paktika, Ghor, Faryab, Badghis, Farah, Kunduz and, in particular, Helmand Provinces.
36. Since the beginning of 2013, in nine rounds of polio vaccination, 8.3 million children under 5 were vaccinated with multiple doses. As at 25 October, 8 confirmed cases of polio were reported in Afghanistan for 2013, an 80 per cent reduction from the same period in 2012. These were confined to the provinces of Kunar and Nangarhar, where efforts to combat the circulation of wild polio virus have been particularly difficult because of insecurity. No polio cases have been reported in southern Afghanistan since November 2012, and 90 per cent of the population is assessed as living in polio-free areas.
37. In October, dry conditions in the west and central highlands resulted in a poor harvest, food shortages and displacement. With the support of the United Nations, non-governmental organizations distributed 1,800 tons of food and non-food items to 8,600 households identified as severely insecure. Mild conditions are forecast for the winter, but, given chronic poverty and lack of basic services, which aggravate the impact of the season, winterization plans are being implemented among vulnerable communities in 100 districts of 22 provinces.
38. Between 1 January and 31 October, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs recorded 235 incidents against humanitarian workers, with 27 deaths, 24 detentions, 45 injuries and 72 abductions. In October
alone, 24 incidents of targeted and indirect violence were reported across 15 provinces, including the killing of an aid worker by a poorly targeted rocket in Nuristan and the death of a local health worker while trying to escape his captors. Abductions and hijackings were most common on the main roads in Herat, Paktya, Wardak and Kunar. In contested areas, the rise in civilian casualties has put pressure on emergency service providers. Access to trauma care is challenged by a lack of capacity, given increasing demand, and by the failure of the parties to the conflict to respect humanitarian principles.
39. The Common Humanitarian Action Plan was 69 per cent funded by 31 October, with funding of $326 million. A common humanitarian fund, under the leadership of the Humanitarian Coordinator, will be launched in 2014 to ensure greater strategic and geographic identification and prioritization of needs.