Myanmar, Covid-19 Vaccines, Madagascar & other topics – Daily Briefing

From The United Nations


Noon briefing by Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesperson for the Secretary-General.

Media – Highlights: – Saint Vincent and the Grenadines – Myanmar – Madagascar – Covid-19 Vaccines – Covid-19/Papua New Guinea

SAINT VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES I wanted to update you on the situation in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, following the eruption of the Soufriere volcano: We have about 30 of our staff from seven different UN agencies there.

They are supporting relief and recovery efforts on the ground in close collaboration with the Government, the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency and other partners.

Along with earlier support for food assistance, water and sanitation, health and protection – including from violence against women and children – the UN team and our partners are providing support with reproductive health, shelter, education and protection of livelihoods, including livestock.

The Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO), for its part, is providing personal protective equipment and medical equipment to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus, also with $250,000 delivered for water and sanitation supplies.

The UN Development Programme (UNDP) is rolling out a $300,000 crisis response and recovery effort to swiftly clean the volcanic ashes, with emergency employment for over 2,000 households. With 20,000 people at risk of food insecurity, the World Food Programme (WFP) and partners continue to deliver immediate assistance.

Three mobile storage units and two prefabricated offices are increasing the agency’s storage capacity. Around 90 per cent water flow capacity has been restored island-wide, in an effort led by the authorities, supported by the United Nations.

MYANMAR From Myanmar, the UN Country Team says today it remains deeply concerned about continued reports of violence used by the security forces against demonstrators.

There are reports of death and injuries amongst demonstrators and bystanders on a daily basis. Our team says that, according to the best available data, at least 774 women, children and men have been killed across Myanmar between 1 February and 6 May.

The vast majority of those who were killed died of gunshots. The UN team is also concerned about the condition of 3,740 people who have been arbitrarily arrested and remain in detention.

Our colleagues in Myanmar said they are also concerned about the increasing reports of explosions and arson in different parts of the country.

MADAGASCAR In Madagascar, the desperate humanitarian situation continues in the Grand Sud part of the country, which is experiencing its most acute drought in four decades, and the situation is sadly deteriorating rapidly.

More than 1.1 million people – about two out of every five people there – are severely food insecure. The situation is expected to deteriorate in the months ahead.

Alarmingly, in Amboasary Atsimo district, about 75 per cent of the population is facing severe hunger, with nearly 14,000 people being catastrophically food insecure and in famine-like conditions.

The number of children admitted for treatment of life-threatening severe acute malnutrition in the first quarter of 2021 was four times higher than the five-year average.

The UN, together with our humanitarian partners, is scaling up the response, but more resources are urgently needed to save lives.

The Flash Appeal for Madagascar, launched in January, called for $76 million to support 1 million people, but is only 22 per cent funded so far. We urgently call on the international community to provide additional funding


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