• In October in Al-Hassakeh governorate in Syria, almost 70,000 school children (70 per cent of all children attending Ministry of Education schools) were negatively impacted by a local authority decision to ban transportation of children to schools to attend the nationally accredited curriculum. UNICEF and partners are advocating with the local authorities to resolve the issue.
• Explosive remnants of war continue to pose a constant risk to children and communities across Syria. Twenty-four casualties in Idleb, Ar-Raqqa, Dar’a and Aleppo were reported, including 71 per cent children. UNICEF is scaling-up community-based Risk Education initiatives in the most affected areas such as East Ghouta, Afrin, Deirez-Zor and Dar’a.
• In Lebanon, 877 measles cases (47 per cent girls) were reported by end of October.
UNICEF through partners have reached over 60,500 children with immunization outreach messages in most at-risk cadasters, screening of immunization status and referrals to Public Health Centers.
• UNICEF has achieved considerable progress with the Catch-Up programme (NonFormal Education) in Jordan with 1,150 children referred back to formal education through the Back-to-School campaign and 751 out-of-school children newly enrolled (41 per cent females) in the reporting month.
• In Syria and Syrian refugee host countries in 2018, UNICEF through its partners supported the enrolment of over 2.9 million children in formal education and more than 353,000 in non-formal/informal learning opportunities. Additionally, almost 623,000 children and adults were reached with sustained child protection, psychosocial support and positive parenting programmes.
Situation in Numbers
5.6 million # of children affected
13.1 million # of people affected (HNO, 2018)
Over 2.5 million (2,538,576) # of registered Syria refugee children
Over 5.6 million (5,641,281) # of registered Syrian refugees (UNHCR, 20 November 2018)
UNICEF Appeal 2018 US$ 1.272 Billion
Funding Status US$ 906.4 Million
Situation Overview & Humanitarian Needs:
During October, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF)-led campaign against the last Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) held enclave in north-eastern rural Deir-ez-Zor governorate has continued at unprecedented intensity forcing more than 27,000 displacements since June. Most of internally displaced persons (IDPs), approximately 5,000 people, are hosted by communities in the Hajin and Gharanij countryside, while some 2,000 people are residing in makeshift camps in Hajin,
Baer Albahra and Gharanij. Although the situation remains fluid and population movements continue, there are still restrictions on the freedom of movement of IDPs, with many using informal routes and reportedly paying large sums of money to reach SDFcontrolled areas. Access by local UN humanitarian partners to the affected area, including the camps and host communities, remains a major challenge due to ongoing insecurity in the area and difficult desert roads. Gharanij and Baer AlBahra IDP locations are more easily accessed by UNICEF and other UN agencies since these areas are further away from the frontlines than some of the makeshift IDP sites.
North-East Syria (NES) INGOs are not able to access the area due to ongoing concerns over the security situation.
During the reporting month in the north-east (Al-Hassakeh governorate), approximately 70,000 school children (70 per cent of all children attending Ministry of Education schools) were negatively impacted by a Local Authority decision to ban transportation of children to schools to attend the nationally accredited curriculum. UNICEF and partners are advocating with the local authorities to resolve the issue.
Despite the decrease in hostilities in North-West Syria following Turkey and Russia’s agreed demilitarized buffer zone, shelling was reported over Halab Jadeed, Jamiet Al-Zahra, Mugambo and Al-Nil street in Aleppo city with several civilian casualties reported. To date, humanitarian access remains possible in Idleb, western Aleppo and northern Hama through cross-border operations. About one million people are estimated to live in the demilitarized zone, including 400,000 IDPs. UNICEF and its partners continue to deliver regular programming, while adjusting strategies to the new operational environment. As of late October, following the reopening of Abu AlThohour (Idleb) crossing-point more than 30,000 returnees (6,000 families) were reported, with high fees imposed on cars, trucks and livestock.
UNICEF partners’ reports from inside Afrin (Aleppo governorate) indicate tensions in Afrin district as the returnees are forcing the IDPs staying in their homes to leave. Furthermore, farmers are under pressure due to heavy taxation by armed groups and the local council.
As a consequence, farmers and their families moved to Aleppo and the east as displaced persons. Additionally, as reported by OCHA, there is a continuation of civilian displacement from Afrin towards government-controlled areas and/or to the east of Syria due to hostilities, arbitrary arrests and looting of olives during its peak season, allegedly committed by armed groups in the region. It is noteworthy, as reported, that the families who flee from Afrin are asked to pay smugglers and travel through dangerous mine and improvised explosive devices (IEDs) routes. As of 22 October, a family was reported to be killed by an IED while en route from Afrin.