Around the world: Daily updates from UN country teams - October 2023
03 October 2023
Our UN teams are on the ground in 162 countries and territories, coordinating joint programmes and tackling a range of multi-faceted priorities and key initiatives on a daily basis — from climate action and food security to gender equality and safety of civilians. UN Resident Coordinators and their teams utilize innovative approaches to problem-solving to better serve communities. Below are some highlights of their work this month.
Wednesday, 18 October
Ukraine: US$14 billion in losses and damages resulting from destruction of the Kakhovka dam; most damage in the energy sector
A new report released [yesterday] by the Government of Ukraine and with technical contributions by eight UN agencies in Ukraine assesses the damages, losses and recovery needs as a result of the destruction of the Kakhovka dam. Losses and damages resulted in almost US$14 billion, with the most damage recorded in the energy sector. Significant long term recovery efforts will be needed in the environment and agriculture sectors given the importance of the Kakhovka reservoir for the irrigation of agricultural land in south of Ukraine and the production of vegetables. The flooding caused by the dam’s destruction submerged 620 square kilometers of land and severely damaged housing and infrastructure. The report estimates that total recovery and reconstruction needs are around US$5 billion, of which US$1.8 billion will be required in the immediate- to short-term. The assessment used innovative drone imaging and AI technology to create models of the impact on areas that were inaccessible due to flooding and unexploded ordnance and mines shifted by the flood waters. The full report as well as a shorter factsheet are available on the UN in Ukraine website.
Ukraine: Boosting the country's monumental recovery efforts and supporting essential services, including birth certificates
Turning to Ukraine, our UN team is working closely with the Government, local authorities, private sector, and communities, including youth groups, to boost the country’s monumental recovery efforts. Our UN team has mobilized and is currently implementing more than $1 billion in recovery and development initiatives across the country. UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Ukraine Denise Brown just visited some of our recovery initiatives in Invakiv, a town in the Kyiv Region. There, the UN Development Programme (UNDP), the International Organization for Migration (IOM), and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) are reconstructing and repairing homes, primary schools, and water systems, all destroyed in the first weeks of the invasion. Our team is also supporting a centre where residents can access a wide range of essential services, including birth certificates. According to Denise Brown, this work is essential as it aligns with the aspirations of war-affected communities.
Tuesday, 10 October
Myanmar: Civilians, including women and children, killed and injured in a bombing that impacted an IDP camp
UN in Myanmar: We are deeply concerned by initial reports from Kachin that civilians, including women and children, have been killed and injured in a bombing that impacted an IDP camp near Laiza last night. Internally Displaced Persons (IDP)camps are places of refuge and civilians, no matter where they are, should never be a target.
Thursday, 5 October
Armenia: Boosting support to national authorities as they address needs of over 100,000 refugees
Our UN team in Armenia, led by acting Resident Coordinator Natia Natsvlishvili, is boosting support to national authorities as they address the needs of over 100,000 refugees. The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) distributed nearly 180 foldable beds and bedding items. The first of 16 UNHCR-backed trucks just arrived carrying nearly 1,000 core relief items and hundreds of foam mattresses, beds, pillows, blankets, and more. For its part, the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) is working with local service providers to prevent gender-based violence, sharing information on how to report cases and receive support. UNFPA distributed 13,000 dignity kits, especially for women and girls, providing training for survivor-centered support. For its part, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) trained social workers in child protection in emergency settings. They also established the first of two support centers, or “Children’s Corner”, in the main refugee recipient town of Goris, with the Armenian Red Cross, helping reconnect families with separated children. UNICEF is bolstering psycho-social and psychological support, along with child protection case management. Also, the UN Development Programme (UNDP) is purchasing green energy solutions and equipment to address the rising needs of refugees and host communities, including solar panels and water heaters, along with bio-toilets.
Mauritius: UN team welcomes Supreme Court's landmark decision to decriminalize consensual same-sex relations
Over to Africa, where our UN team in Mauritius welcomed the Supreme Court’s landmark decision yesterday to decriminalize consensual same-sex relations. Resident Coordinator Lisa Singh said that the court’s decision to overturn an obsolete colonial law demonstrates a commitment to non-discrimination and to leaving no one behind. She added that the UN team and regional and international partners welcome Mauritius’ decision to join the growing list of African countries protecting the human rights of everyone, including LGBTQI+ people. Our UN team on the ground has been building the capacity of relevant national institutions, also strengthening partnerships with civil society. Most recently, a regional consultation was held in Mauritius organized with the UN Development Programme (UNDP), over 60 members of civil society organizations, along with UNAIDS, the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Bank. [The full press release is on the UN team’s website: Mauritius.un.org]
Tuesday, 3 October
Armenia: UN team supports Government to address influx of refugees and provide urgent assistance
We have an update from our UN team in Armenia as they boost support for the Government’s response to address the influx of refugees. According to the latest official figures over 100,514 people have crossed into Armenia. The UN Development Programme (UNDP) started renovating a social house to shelter elderly persons. For its part, the World Health Organization (WHO) is also sending medicines for non-communicable diseases, covering three months of treatments for up to 50,000 people. Also, the UN Refugees Agency (UNHCR) is providing technical assistance to authorities for refugee registration, distributing core relief items, also conducting protection monitoring in government-run registration centers. Our team on the ground is also focusing on much-needed psychosocial support to refugees, including with UNDP and WHO. Acting Resident Coordinator Natia Natsvlishvili stressed that behind each number is a child, a woman, a man, an elderly, a family who left everything behind, urgently needing support, and reiterated the UN team’s determination to provide immediate assistance.
Interested in more? Check out previous daily updates from UN teams 'around the world':