The Sentinel

Human Rights Action :: Humanitarian Response :: Health :: Education :: Heritage Stewardship ::
Sustainable Development
__________________________________________________
Week ending 3 August 2019

This weekly digest is intended to aggregate and distill key content from a broad spectrum of practice domains and organization types including key agencies/IGOs, NGOs, governments, academic and research institutions, consortia and collaborations, foundations, and commercial organizations. We also monitor a spectrum of peer-reviewed journals and general media channels. The Sentinel’s geographic scope is global/regional but selected country-level content is included. We recognize that this spectrum/scope yields an indicative and not an exhaustive product. Comments and suggestions should be directed to:

David R. Curry
Editor
GE2P2 Global Foundation – Governance, Evidence, Ethics, Policy, Practice
david.r.curry@ge2p2center.net

PDF-The Sentinel_ period ending 3 Aug 2019

Contents
:: Week in Review  [See selected posts just below]
:: Key Agency/IGO/Governments Watch – Selected Updates from 30+ entities   [see PDF]
:: INGO/Consortia/Joint Initiatives Watch – Media Releases, Major Initiatives, Research:: Foundation/Major Donor Watch -Selected Updates
:: Journal Watch – Key articles and abstracts from 100+ peer-reviewed journals  [see PDF]

Record Number of Children Killed and Maimed in 2018 :: Secretary-General – Annual Report on Children and Armed Conflict

Children and Armed Conflict

Record Number of Children Killed and Maimed in 2018, Urgent to Put in Place Measures to Prevent Violations
Tuesday, 30 July 2019
Secretary-General Annual Report on Children and Armed Conflict
Read the full report

The year 2018 was marked by the highest levels of children killed or maimed in armed conflict since the United Nations started monitoring and reporting this grave violation, shows the latest Annual Report of the Secretary-General on Children and Armed Conflict released today.

Overall, more than 24,000 violations were verified in 2018 in the 20 conflict situations on the Children and Armed Conflict agenda. While the number for other violations decreased or remained relatively steady, more than 12,000 children were killed or maimed, mostly by cross-fire incidents, ERW, IEDs, landmines and active combat actions by non-state actors, state actors and multinational forces.

“It is immensely sad that children continue to be disproportionately affected by armed conflict, and it is horrific to see them killed and maimed as a result of hostilities. It is imperative that all parties to conflicts prioritize the protection of children. This cannot wait: parties to conflict must take their responsibility to protect children and put in place tangible measures to end and prevent these violations,” said the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict, Virginia Gamba.

The recruitment and use of children continued unabated with more than 7,000 children drawn into frontline fighting and support roles globally. Somalia remained the country with the highest number of children recruited and used followed by Nigeria and Syria. “Nevertheless, the number of children released has consistently increased in the past years, as a result of direct engagement of the UN with parties to conflict bringing hope to thousands of children,” said the Special Representative.

Incidents of sexual violence against boys and girls remained prevalent in all situations (933 cases), but the violation continued to be underreported due to lack of access, stigma and fear of reprisals; the highest figures were verified in Somalia and DRC. Children continued to be abducted, often to be used in hostilities or for sexual violence. Nearly 2,500 children were verified as abducted in 2018, more than half of them in Somalia. While the verified attacks on schools and hospitals decreased globally (1,056), it significantly intensified in some conflict situations such as Afghanistan and in Syria, where the highest number of attacks was verified since the beginning of the conflict. The military use of schools remained a worrying trend and the deprivation of access to education was alarming in situations like Mali, with 827 schools closed at the end of December 2018, preventing 244,000 children from access to education. A total of 795 incidents of denial of humanitarian access to children were verified, a decrease compared to 2017, the majority in Yemen, Mali and CAR .

The Special Representative commended the work of child protection and humanitarian actors on the ground providing humanitarian assistance to children as well as support to victims of violations in all country situations and called on parties to conflict to allow unimpeded access. “The tireless efforts of child protection actors in conflict situations is simply remarkable; the international community must continue to support them and ensure that they have the appropriate resources to support the children in need,” SRSG Gamba said.

Release and Reintegration of Children and Prevention of Grave Violations
A total of 13,600 children benefited from release and reintegration support worldwide, an increasing number compared to the previous year (12,000). 2,253 children were separated from armed groups in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, 833 in Nigeria and 785 in the Central African Republic. As the number of children released is increasing, resources and funding for reintegration support must meet the growing needs, as called for in Security Council resolution 2427 (2018) and highlighted in the report’s recommendation.

Engagement with parties to conflict led to the signature of three new Actions Plans, demonstrating commitment to ending and preventing violations as well as protecting children. In the Central African Republic : Mouvement Patriotique pour la Centrafrique (MPC, May 2018) and Front Populaire pour la Renaissance de la Centrafrique (FPRC, June 2019), as well as in Syria: Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF, June 2019). In Yemen, the Government adopted a Road Map at the end of 2018 to speed-up the implementation of its 2014 Action Plan, while the Coalition to Support Legitimacy in Yemen signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the United Nations in March 2019 to increase the protection of children during its military operations; a workplan with concrete and time-bound activities is being finalized. In the DRC, eight armed groups commanders signed unilateral declaration in 2018, committing to end and prevent child recruitment and use and other violations. More armed groups signed similar declaration since.

“A preventive approach including through the development of national, subregional and regional prevention plans, in line with UN Security Council resolution 2427 (2018), is the only way to ultimately limit the number of children victims of grave violations and ensure that protection frameworks are in place, not only in countries affected by conflict but also in their immediate region,” SRSG Gamba said.

International commitments are powerful instruments for the protection of children. South Sudan acceded to the Optional Protocol on the involvement of children in armed conflict (OPAC) in September 2018, while Mali endorsed the Safe Schools Declaration in February 2018.

Detention of Children in 2018
The detention of thousands of children around the world for their actual or alleged association with armed groups continued to be deeply concerning in 2018. The Special Representative reminded that legal procedures should comply with international juvenile justice standards, children should be primarily treated as victims of recruitment and use and alternatives to detention should be sought whenever possible.

The situation for children deprived of liberty, particularly in Syria and Iraq with the majority below the age of 5, is tragic. The report calls on concerned Member States to work closely with the UN to facilitate the relocation of foreign children and women actually or allegedly affiliated with extremist groups, with the best interest of the child as the primary consideration in decisions affecting their lives. “Children exposed to the highest levels of violence should not be further ostracized once released from armed groups and armed forces. These children are victims of recruitment and use and their best interest must be given primary consideration”.

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UN children and conflict list ‘lacks credibility and accuracy’ – World Vision
:: Last year was the worst on record for incidents of killing and maiming children
:: World Vision raises concerns as UN issues its report
:: Documented perpetrators are ‘being let off the hook” says the aid agency
Friday, August 2, 2019

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Save the Children on UN report on children in armed conflict: “States with powerful friends can get away with destroying children’s lives”
30 July 2019
With at least 1689 Yemeni children killed or maimed in 2018, children are still bearing the brunt of the conflict in Yemen, Save the Children warned today. Some 729 of the child casualties were a result of attacks by the Saudi and Emirati-led coalition, in addition to 15 attacks on schools and hospitals, according to the annual UN-report on Children and Armed Conflict.

Save the Children said UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has failed to fully hold the coalition to account by not including it on the annual ‘list of shame’ of the report for both these grave violations against children in Yemen…

…The Saudi and Emirati-led Coalition is not the only actor that was named but not held fully accountable in the 2018 Annual Report, Save the Children emphasizes. Last year 927 children were killed and 2135 maimed in Afghanistan by all parties to the conflict, but not all were listed for it in the UN report. And despite a pattern of grave violations against children in the occupied Palestinian territories documented by the UN, the parties to the conflict were not listed in this year’s report.

The Secretary-General continues a worrying trend of shielding state armed or international forces from truly being held to account, Save the Children warns. The organization urges the Secretary-General to publish a complete list of perpetrators in this year’s and in future annual reports as an important step towards ensuring perpetrators stop committing grave violations against children. The listing decision should only be based on credible and UN-verified patterns of violations, not on political pressure. The implementation of a UN action plan to address and prevent grave violations against children must remain the formal and only path for removing a party from the list of shame.

Public Statement by Chair of Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict – Myanmar :: Security Council SC/13904 – 30 July 2019

Myanmar

Public Statement by Chair of Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict
Security Council SC/13904 30 July 2019

At its eighty-third meeting, on 30 July 2019, the Security Council Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict, in connection with the examination of the fifth report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict in Myanmar (document S/2018/956), agreed to convey the following messages through a public statement by the Chair of the Working Group:

To all parties to the armed conflict in Myanmar as described in the report of the Secretary-General, in particular to the Tatmadaw Kyi, including the integrated border guard forces, as well as non-State armed groups, such as the Karen National Liberation Army, the United Wa State Army, the Democratic Karen Benevolent Army, the Kachin Independence Army, the Karenni Army, the Karen National Liberation Army Peace Council, and the Shan State Army:

:: Strongly condemning all violations and abuses that continue to be committed against children in Myanmar, urging them to immediately end and prevent all violations of applicable international law involving the recruitment and use of children, abduction, killing and maiming, rape and other forms of sexual violence, attacks on schools and hospitals as well as the military use of schools and denial of humanitarian access and to comply with their obligations under international law; and calling upon the Government of Myanmar to criminalize the six grave violations against children affected by armed conflict;

:: Expressing deep concern about the continued recruitment and use of children in violation of international law by all parties to the armed conflict, including by non-State armed groups, the continued abductions of children, including for recruitment purposes, as well as the detention of children associated with armed forces and armed groups;

:: Expressing deep concern at the high number of children killed and maimed, including as a direct or indirect result of actions by the Myanmar military and security forces, of fighting between parties to armed conflict and of attacks against civilian populations, including through the use of anti-personnel landmines, and urging all parties to comply with their obligations under international law, including international humanitarian law, as applicable, in particular the principles of distinction and proportionality and the obligation to take all feasible precautions to avoid and, in any event, minimize harm to civilians and civilian objects;

:: Calls upon all parties to armed conflict to allow and facilitate safe, timely and unhindered humanitarian access to children, respect the exclusively humanitarian nature and impartiality of humanitarian aid and respect the work of all United Nations humanitarian agencies and their humanitarian partners, including child protection actors, without distinction;

:: Calling upon all parties to the armed conflict to comply with applicable international law and to respect the civilian character of schools and hospitals, including their personnel, and to end and prevent deliberate, disproportionate or otherwise indiscriminate attacks or threats of attacks against those institutions and their personnel as well as the military use of schools and hospitals in violation of applicable international law;

:: Urging all parties to the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement to fully abide by its provisions relating to the prevention of the six grave violations against children, as well as those actors who are or will be engaged in the peace process fully comply with the agreement made at the July 2018 third session of the Union Peace Conference (21st Century Panglong Conference) to “set up and conduct programs to ensure children’s rights, abide by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child for all-round development of children and eliminate the Six Grave Violations against children”;

:: Demanding that all parties to the armed conflict further implement previous conclusions of the Working Group (S/AC.51/2008/9, S/AC.51/2009/4, and S/AC.51/2013/2)…

Equitable access to quality education for IDP children

Education – Internally Displaced Children

Equitable access to quality education for IDP children
UNICEF/Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC)
July 2019 :: 12 pages
PDF: https://www.unicef.org/media/56196/file/Equitable%20access%20to%20quality%20education%20for%20internally%20displaced%20children.pdf
Key Messages
:: The exact number of children living in internal displacement worldwide is unknown, but there were estimated to be over 17 million at the end of 2018, as a result of conflict and violence, and millions more due to disasters. Five million youth, aged between 18 and 24, were also living in internal displacement. Too many internally displaced children grow up deprived of an education and the long term opportunities it affords.

:: A lack of capacity, resources and persistent insecurity, social tensions and discrimination are all significant barriers to education in many displacement situations. Internal displacement often places huge strains on already inadequate educational infrastructure, and when displaced children do attend school in many cases it is through parallel systems. These tend not to have qualified teachers or offer certified examinations, and risk having their funding cut at short notice.

:: Access to quality inclusive education brings significant economic, social and health benefits to displaced and host communities alike. It helps to foster cohesive societies and is a vital tool in fighting prejudice, stereotypes and discrimination. By improving livelihood opportunities and supporting socioeconomic development for all, it also has the potential to address some of the causes of displacement and prevent future crises.

:: Ensuring access to national education systems for internally displaced children is vital, provided it is safe to do so. The reflexive responses of governments to crises, and in many cases the humanitarian actors supporting governments, however, often include offering education outside the formal system. Governments have an obligation to provide equal access to education for internally displaced children, and there is growing consensus that informal schooling is not a sustainable solution.

:: Far greater priority needs to be given, and efforts and investment devoted to minimizing the disruption to education that internal displacement causes, while maximizing the potential protection and other vital support that schools provide for their displaced pupils.

Migrants and refugees: Improving health and well-being in a world on the move

Featured Journal Content

PLoS Medicine
http://www.plosmedicine.org/
(Accessed 3 Aug 2019)
Editorial
Migrants and refugees: Improving health and well-being in a world on the move
Richard Turner, on behalf of the PLOS Medicine editors
| published 30 Jul 2019 PLOS Medicine
https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1002876
At the 72nd World Health Assembly, held during May 20–28 of this year in Geneva, Switzerland, a very welcome global action plan was agreed upon, which seeks to establish a “framework of priorities and guiding principles… to promote the health of refugees and migrants” [1]. Indicating the pressing need for leadership by WHO and other actors, over the period from 2000 to 2017, the number of international migrants is estimated to have risen by 49%, to 258 million people [2]. The WHO document also notes that the number of forcibly displaced people has reached its highest-ever level, at an estimated 68.5 million individuals, including 25.4 million refugees—the majority hosted in low- and middle-income countries. Furthermore, approximately 10 million stateless people lack basic human rights to freedom of movement, education, and healthcare. Scattered across the planet, such enormous numbers of people dwarf the individual populations of many countries, yet, all too often, no government or international agency can offer adequate protection or health provision to this virtual state of refugees and migrants.

Migration, whether voluntary or otherwise, covers a wide range of situations. People may move within their own country or to another country for economic or family reasons, and, even in familiar surroundings or in transit, individuals will have health needs that may not be addressed, and they can also be vulnerable to exploitation or violence. Where there is armed conflict or persecution, the degree of danger and vulnerability is substantially greater. One distressing example is the Syrian conflict, which has involved extreme and prolonged violence and led to the harm and displacement of large numbers of people since 2011. UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, estimates that, as of June 2019, 5.6 million people have been displaced to Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, and other nearby countries, with 6.6 million people displaced within Syria itself [3]. Such large and unpredictable movements of refugees create great challenges in protection and provision of shelter, food and water, and medical care.

There is substantial documentation of the numerous and grave health threats faced by migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers. Migrant workers who have relocated internationally are at risk of occupational injuries and ill health, for instance, highlighting the need for employers and host country governments to strengthen employment rights and healthcare provision [4]. Migrants and refugees can be vulnerable to serious outbreaks of infectious diseases, such as cholera, in emergency settings [5]. In a transit or destination country, people could be affected by diseases prevalent in their country of origin, such as tuberculosis, and by noncommunicable diseases, for example, that reflect the situation in countries of transit and destination. Mental ill-health, including posttraumatic stress disorder in relevant groups of people, is a particular concern for migrants and refugees and their health providers [6]. In many settings, barriers of language, culture, or law prevent migrants from accessing essential services. As discussed in an article by Cathy Zimmerman and colleagues published as part of the “Migration & Health” Collection in PLOS Medicine in 2011, migration can be viewed in terms of distinct phases, from predeparture to potential return to a person’s country of origin, with opportunities for health monitoring and intervention through suitable services at each stage [7].

Some of the drivers of the growing phenomenon of human migration include population expansion, increased availability of long-distance travel, and greater access to economic opportunities for those willing and able to move. Alongside these factors, it would be naïve not to acknowledge the potential impact of migration on the populations and infrastructure of destination countries—witness the heated debate in the United States over its long and tortuous border with Mexico and the people who attempt to cross that divide. Owing to the prominent, large-scale challenges presented in many countries by the fluid and unpredictable nature of migration, regrettable political constituencies have emerged that can marginalize and stigmatize migrants and refugees. Based as they are on the nonsensical idea that one person merits appropriate access to healthcare and other services but another person does not, these political entities are, though dangerous and destructive, vulnerable to those who can mobilize principled and just arguments. Generally, stable governments can be expected to provide the necessary resources and plan the provision of suitable infrastructure and health services for those who have migrated to their jurisdiction, and where they do not, support from international agencies must be made available.

International agreements set out clear responsibilities for protection of and provision for refugees and asylum seekers, whereas the situation for other migrants is less clear—indicating the potential importance of the new WHO plan in driving the activities of host states and appropriate international bodies. Priorities of the WHO plan include deploying public health interventions to improve migrant health alongside promotion of essential health services and occupational health provision. Strengthening health monitoring and information systems is recommended, as is accelerated progress toward universal health coverage. There should be attention toward mainstreaming migrant and refugee health, the plan notes, and to overcoming misconceptions about these groups of people. We look forward to seeing the impact of the plan in practice.

Seeking to raise awareness of the health threats faced by migrants and refugees and to promote research, service, and policy innovation in this area, the editors of PLOS Medicine are planning a Special Issue on the topic to be published early in 2020. Paul Spiegel, director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Humanitarian Health, who will be a Guest Editor for the issue, comments that “migration is a global phenomenon that will likely increase due to improved communication and modes of transport as well as, unfortunately, due to climate change. Health is a human right, and we must all work together to provide appropriate health services to migrants that are equitable, affordable and take into account services available to nationals.” A call for papers has been issued separately setting out the detailed scope for the Special Issue, and we look forward to considering your research papers dedicated to understanding and improving the health and well-being of refugees and migrants in all settings.

References available at title link above

Inter-Agency Statement on Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, one year on

Ebola – DRC+
Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC)

Inter-Agency Statement on Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, one year on
Joint statement from WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock, UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore, and World Food Programme Executive Director David Beasley
.
NEW YORK/GENEVA/KINSHASA/DAKAR/ROME, 31 July 2019 – “Tomorrow, 1 August, marks one year since the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) declared an outbreak of the Ebola virus disease in North Kivu province of the DRC. Two weeks ago, it was declared a public health emergency of international concern.

“Just yesterday, a new case of the disease was confirmed in Goma, with the patient later dying – the second case to be confirmed this month in the city of around 1 million people. This latest case in such a dense population center underscores the very real risk of further disease transmission, perhaps beyond the country’s borders, and the very urgent need for a strengthened global response and increased donor investment.

“In the last year, there have been more than 2,600 confirmed cases, including more than 1,800 deaths in parts of Ituri and North Kivu provinces. Almost one in three ‘cases’ is a child. Every single ‘case’ is someone who has gone through an unimaginable ordeal. More than 770 have survived.

“The disease is relentless and devastating.

“Ebola passes from mother to child, husband to wife, patient to caregiver, from the dead body of a victim to the mourning relative. The disease turns the most mundane aspects of everyday life upside down — hurting local businesses, preventing children from going to school and hampering vital and routine health services. It is primarily a health crisis, but one that also critically impacts how people care for their family, view their neighbours and interact with their community.

“The challenges to stopping further transmission are indeed considerable. But none are insurmountable. And none can be an excuse for not getting the job done. The United Nations and partners are continuing to ramp up the response in support of the Government and to further bolster joint action. The UN is working to ensure an enabling environment for the public health response that its health agency supports, including appropriate security, logistics, political and community engagement, and action to address the concerns of affected communities. We commend the recent Government decision to take measures to ensure its efforts are further joined up.

“We also salute the heroic efforts of the mostly Congolese healthcare workers on the front line, the people of affected communities and partners. Despite their ceaseless work, the disease continues to spread. This outbreak is occurring in an active conflict zone which makes an effective response far more complicated because of insecurity, including armed attacks on health workers and facilities, and population displacement. In some of the affected areas, violence is preventing us from reaching communities and working with them to stop further transmission.

“We call on all parties to the violence to ensure that responders can do their work safely and that those seeking care can access it without fear of attacks.

“We are proud of the work that we and our partners have done so far, collaborating with communities in support of the Government-led response to protect those at risk and care for those affected:
:: Over 170,000 people vaccinated;
:: 1,300 people treated with investigational therapies across 14 treatment and transit centres;
:: 77 million screenings of national and international travelers;
:: 20,000 contacts visited daily to ensure they do not also become sick;
:: 3,000 samples tested in 8 laboratories every week;
:: More than 10,000 handwashing sites installed in critical locations;
:: More than 2,000 community engagement workers operating in affected – areas listening to concerns, gaining trust, and mobilizing local action;
:: Over 440,000 patients and contacts provided with food assistance, crucial to limiting movement among people who could spread the disease; and
:: Daily meals provided to 25,000 schoolchildren in Ebola-affected areas to help build trust within communities.

“Now we must build on those achievements, but to do so we urgently need far more support from the international community. The Government needs more support than ever before. The public health response to an Ebola outbreak requires an exceptional level of investment; 100 per cent of cases must be treated and 100 per cent of contacts must be traced and managed. We need air transport to get responders and critical equipment to some of the most remote areas and warehousing to safely store precious health supplies including vaccines. We will continue to accelerate our response, and we ask partners old and new to do the same.

“At this critical juncture, we reaffirm our collective commitment to the people of the DRC; we mourn for those we have lost; and we call for solidarity to end this outbreak.”

Emergencies

Emergencies

POLIO
Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC)
Polio this week as of 31 July 2019
:: July 2019 Polio News is available online for all the latest news, polio in numbers and the funding updates.

Summary of new viruses this week:
:: Afghanistan — one wild poliovirus type 1 (WPV1) case;
:: Pakistan— two WPV1-positive cases and eight WPV1-positive environmental samples;
:: Nigeria —one circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus type 2 (cVDPV2) case and one cVDPV2-positive environmental sample;
:: Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) — one cVDPV2 sample isolated from a contact case and one cVDPV2 community isolate;
:: Central African Republic — one cVDPV2-positive environmental sample and 13 cVDPV2 samples isolated from community;
:: Myanmar — one cVDPV type 1 case and five cVDPV1 samples isolated from a contact case.

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Ebola – DRC+
Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC)

Inter-Agency Statement on Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, one year on
Joint statement from WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock, UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore, and World Food Programme Executive Director David Beasley
NEW YORK/GENEVA/KINSHASA/DAKAR/ROME, 31 July 2019 – “Tomorrow, 1 August, marks one year since the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) declared an outbreak of the Ebola virus disease in North Kivu province of the DRC. Two weeks ago, it was declared a public health emergency of international concern.

“Just yesterday, a new case of the disease was confirmed in Goma, with the patient later dying – the second case to be confirmed this month in the city of around 1 million people. This latest case in such a dense population center underscores the very real risk of further disease transmission, perhaps beyond the country’s borders, and the very urgent need for a strengthened global response and increased donor investment.

“In the last year, there have been more than 2,600 confirmed cases, including more than 1,800 deaths in parts of Ituri and North Kivu provinces. Almost one in three ‘cases’ is a child. Every single ‘case’ is someone who has gone through an unimaginable ordeal. More than 770 have survived.

“The disease is relentless and devastating.

“Ebola passes from mother to child, husband to wife, patient to caregiver, from the dead body of a victim to the mourning relative. The disease turns the most mundane aspects of everyday life upside down — hurting local businesses, preventing children from going to school and hampering vital and routine health services. It is primarily a health crisis, but one that also critically impacts how people care for their family, view their neighbours and interact with their community.

“The challenges to stopping further transmission are indeed considerable. But none are insurmountable. And none can be an excuse for not getting the job done. The United Nations and partners are continuing to ramp up the response in support of the Government and to further bolster joint action. The UN is working to ensure an enabling environment for the public health response that its health agency supports, including appropriate security, logistics, political and community engagement, and action to address the concerns of affected communities. We commend the recent Government decision to take measures to ensure its efforts are further joined up.

“We also salute the heroic efforts of the mostly Congolese healthcare workers on the front line, the people of affected communities and partners. Despite their ceaseless work, the disease continues to spread. This outbreak is occurring in an active conflict zone which makes an effective response far more complicated because of insecurity, including armed attacks on health workers and facilities, and population displacement. In some of the affected areas, violence is preventing us from reaching communities and working with them to stop further transmission.

“We call on all parties to the violence to ensure that responders can do their work safely and that those seeking care can access it without fear of attacks.

“We are proud of the work that we and our partners have done so far, collaborating with communities in support of the Government-led response to protect those at risk and care for those affected:
:: Over 170,000 people vaccinated;
:: 1,300 people treated with investigational therapies across 14 treatment and transit centres;
:: 77 million screenings of national and international travelers;
:: 20,000 contacts visited daily to ensure they do not also become sick;
:: 3,000 samples tested in 8 laboratories every week;
:: More than 10,000 handwashing sites installed in critical locations;
:: More than 2,000 community engagement workers operating in affected – areas listening to concerns, gaining trust, and mobilizing local action;
:: Over 440,000 patients and contacts provided with food assistance, crucial to limiting movement among people who could spread the disease; and
:: Daily meals provided to 25,000 schoolchildren in Ebola-affected areas to help build trust within communities.

“Now we must build on those achievements, but to do so we urgently need far more support from the international community. The Government needs more support than ever before. The public health response to an Ebola outbreak requires an exceptional level of investment; 100 per cent of cases must be treated and 100 per cent of contacts must be traced and managed. We need air transport to get responders and critical equipment to some of the most remote areas and warehousing to safely store precious health supplies including vaccines. We will continue to accelerate our response, and we ask partners old and new to do the same.

“At this critical juncture, we reaffirm our collective commitment to the people of the DRC; we mourn for those we have lost; and we call for solidarity to end this outbreak.”

::::::

Rwanda’s border with DRC remains open
Kigali, August 1 2019 — The Ministry of Health confirms that Rwanda’s border with the Democratic Republic of Congo is open, following traffic slow-down this morning as measures were put in place to reinforce screening procedures and public safety at entry points.
To date, Rwanda remains Ebola free. The Ministry has advised against unnecessary travels to Goma-Eastern Congo, following increasing number of cases confirmed in DRC, and requested that individuals who have recently travelled to an Ebola affected area to report to the nearest screening station and to report any suspected Ebola cases via the Ministry of health toll-free lines 114, police number 112 or to community health workers or the nearest health centre…

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Geneva Palais briefing note on the impact of the Ebola outbreak on children in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Press release
This is a summary of remarks by Jerome Pfaffman, UNICEF Senior Health Specialist – to whom quoted text may be attributed – at today’s press briefing at the Palais des Nations in Geneva
30/07/2019
…This Ebola response is far more complex because it is in an active conflict zone. People living in North Kivu and Ituri are facing a public health emergency and a humanitarian crisis at the same time.
Both provinces, for example, are also facing a major measles outbreak. In Ituri, about half of the health facilities have been damaged or destroyed during fighting over the past two years. There is mass displacement. We have just completed a first vaccination campaign in the provincial capital, Bunia, where we vaccinated more than 40,000 children against measles. But we need to vaccinate far more children, against the full array of diseases, in order to protect them from all the public health risks they are exposed to.
This is why the new strategic response plan includes both an intensification of the public health response, and a whole program to address acute humanitarian and social needs.
UNICEF will need to triple its budget to respond to this complex crisis. This includes about 70 million dollars for epidemic control activities, 30 million to build community capacities in at-risk areas, and another 70 million to deliver essential services.
Colleagues and communities are fighting the outbreak tirelessly but we desperately need the international community to back us up…

::::::

Press release
UNICEF ramps up Ebola prevention efforts as South Sudan assessed as ‘high-risk’ country
UN children’s agency reaches 3 million with Ebola prevention messages
29/07/2019
…UNICEF South Sudan is focusing on and engaging populations that are most at risk in the states bordering DRC and Uganda. The UN children’s agency and its partners have trained 450 front-line mobilizers who are knocking on doors, organizing community meetings and engaging religious and local leaders to disseminate life-saving messages.
“Our teams and partners on the ground working in the communities confirm that an increasing number of people are now aware of Ebola, and the protection measures they can take to avoid infection,” said Ayoya, “The early detection and containment of the three Ebola cases in Uganda in June came as a result of increased public awareness and shows the true value of the prevention work and of working with communities. As long as Ebola remains on our doorstep, we cannot rest and must continue our efforts.”…

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Editor’s Note:
WHO has posted a refreshed emergencies page which presents an updated listing of Grade 3,2,1 emergencies as below.
WHO Grade 3 Emergencies [to 3 Aug 2019]

Democratic Republic of the Congo
[See DRC Ebola+ above for detail]

Cyclone Idai – No new digest announcements identified
Mozambique floods – No new digest announcements identified
Nigeria – No new digest announcements identified
Somalia – No new digest announcements identified
South Sudan – No new digest announcements identified
Syrian Arab Republic – No new digest announcements identified
Yemen – No new digest announcements identified

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WHO Grade 2 Emergencies [to 3 Aug 2019]

Libya
:: Libya: Five medical staff dead in latest attack on health facilities in Tripoli
Tripoli, 28 July 2019 – The World Health Organization strongly condemns yesterday’s attack on Az Zawiyah Field Hospital in the south of Tripoli. Five health workers were killed and eight were injured in the attack. The hospital was damaged and forced to suspend its services.

MERS-CoV
:: MERS-CoV global summary and assessment of risk – August 2018
pdf, 570kb

Myanmar
:: Bi‐weekly Situation Report 15 – 1 August 2019

Afghanistan – No new digest announcements identified
Cameroon – No new digest announcements identified
Central African Republic – No new digest announcements identified
Ethiopia – No new digest announcements identified
HIV in Pakistan – No new digest announcements identified
Iran floods 2019 – No new digest announcements identified
Iraq – No new digest announcements identified
Malawi floods – No new digest announcements identified
Measles in Europe – No new digest announcements identified
Niger – No new digest announcements identified
occupied Palestinian territory – No new digest announcements identified
Sao Tome and Principe Necrotizing Cellulitis (2017)
Sudan – No new digest announcements identified
Ukraine – No new digest announcements identified
Zimbabwe – No new digest announcements identified

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WHO Grade 1 Emergencies [to 3 Aug 2019]

Angola – No new digest announcements identified
Chad – No new digest announcements identified
Djibouti – No new digest announcements identified
Indonesia – Sulawesi earthquake 2018 – No new digest announcements identified
Kenya – No new digest announcements identified
Mali – No new digest announcements identified
Namibia – viral hepatitis – No new digest announcements identified
Tanzania – No new digest announcements identified

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UN OCHA – L3 Emergencies
The UN and its humanitarian partners are currently responding to three ‘L3’ emergencies. This is the global humanitarian system’s classification for the response to the most severe, large-scale humanitarian crises. 
Syrian Arab Republic – No new digest announcements identified
Yemen – No new digest announcements identified

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UN OCHA – Corporate Emergencies
When the USG/ERC declares a Corporate Emergency Response, all OCHA offices, branches and sections provide their full support to response activities both at HQ and in the field.
Editor’s Note:
Ebola in the DRC has bene added as a OCHA “Corporate Emergency” this week:
CYCLONE IDAI and Kenneth – No new digest announcements identified
EBOLA OUTBREAK IN THE DRC – No new digest announcements identified

 

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