Emergency Response in Western Libya: Flash Appeal
On the 3rd of April 2019, the Libyan National Army (LNA) initiated a military incursion into western Libya, with the objective of taking control of Tripoli. The movement towards Tripoli, however, has been met with the military resistance from the Government of National Accord (GNA) and affiliated armed groups. Armed clashes have been particularly heavy in the southern districts of Tripoli, killing and wounding civilians, displacing thousands of families and critically impact access to basic services, water, and shelter.
The on-going armed conflict has affected approximately 1.5 million people, including more than half a million children, who live in conflict-affected areas in Tripoli and other cities in western Libya. Disproportionate and indiscriminate use of explosive weapons has driven thousands of families from their homes in highly populated areas of Tripoli. As of April 12th, over 9,500 individuals have been displaced; this number continues to rise. Some displaced families with the extended family members, others are staying in centres established by Tripoli crisis Management Committee. Detained migrants and refugees, including women and children, are particularly vulnerable, especially those in detention centres located in the vicinity of the fighting.
UNICEF Emergency Response
UNICEF is the lead agency for the coordination Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), and Education sectors and Child protection sub-sector. UNICEF seeks to ensure that effective humanitarian coordination improves accountable, predictable, timely, and efficient response, which paves the way for recovery.
UNICEF has prepositioned essential water, sanitation and hygiene supplies, drugs and consumable medical materials, education and recreational kits, required to provide immediate assistance to the conflict-affected and displaced children and their families in Tripoli and beyond.
UNICEF is spearheading the Rapid Response Mechanism to ensure improved inter-agency assistance at the onset of an emergency through the delivery of a basic package of essential commodities, including food, hygiene items and other essentials. Approximately 200 families (roughly 1,000 individuals, including children) have been assisted since the onset of the crisis.
As a part of the health response, UNICEF is working with the Ministry of Health to support health facilities in conflict-affected areas to ensure the regular supply of essential medical kits. UNICEF provided four medical kits to Zintan hospital, which is sufficient to provide a primary health care package for at least 10,000 people for three months. The health facilities in southern Tripoli will be provided with the same medical kits in the next two days.
UNICEF’s child protection response in conflict-affected areas provides children with safe spaces for play and recreational activities. Additionally, UNICEF and its partners are providing specialized psychosocial services to displaced boys and girls and psychosocial support to their families. These essential interventions build children’s resilience by re-establishing a sense of normalcy and providing targeted support, as needed. Since the beginning of the conflict, more than 100 boys and girls and 50 parents have benefited from child protection programmes and awareness raising.
The breakdown in the food supply line has resulted in a deterioration of food security in detention centres. In response, UNICEF and partners have increased distribution of high emergency biscuits to migrant and refugee children and women, in addition to regular nutrition screening.
In order to respond to the emergencies in Tripoli and western Libya, UNICEF and its partners immediately require US$ 4.777 million to continue providing multi-sectoral assistance to children and their families directly affected by the conflict.