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CrisisInSight Weekly Picks, 22 September 2021

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Afghan girls were excluded from returning to secondary schools by decision of the Taliban-run Ministry of Education on 17 September. The Taliban announced the reopening of middle schools and high schools only for male students above grade 6 and their male teachers. 60% of the 3.7 million children out of school in Afghanistan were girls already prior to the Taliban takeover. Only 37% of teenage girls can read and write, compared to 66% of boys. The problem is more severe in rural areas, where only 40% of girls attend primary school compared to 70% in urban areas. Insecurity, traditional gender norms, shortage of female teachers, lack of transportation, and inadequate number of schools were limiting girls’ access to education prior to the Taliban takeover. The situation is likely to be further aggravated by the deteriorating security and economic conditions and weak governance.

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The humanitarian impact of the 14 August earthquake in southern Haiti, gang violence, and political instability are generating a new high influx of Haitian migrants into the United States. Between 14,000–16,000 migrants have arrived in Del Rio, on the US-Mexico border, since early September. The majority are Haitians. The implementation of the Title 42 immigration policy, which is continuing with some exemptions under the Biden administration, is hindering asylum procedures and facilitating migrants’ expulsion. As a result, many Haitians in Del Rio were sent back to Haiti or remain in makeshift shelters in the border area. Makeshift shelters lack necessary WASH infrastructure and facilities, as well as food and NFIs. Food shortages have forced many to briefly cross the border into Mexico to stock up on necessities. High temperatures and the fluctuating flow of Rio Bravo pose risks of heat stroke and drowning.

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Displacement across Myanmar increased by 18% between 1–15 September compared to the previous two weeks because of clashes between the military and armed groups. New displacements were reported in the western Chin State, Magway and Sagaing regions, as well as in southeastern Kayah state. The People’s Defence Force and several ethnic armed groups increased attacks against the military after the National Unity Government’s call for nationwide uprising on 7 September. 1,000 people were displaced between 14–15 September alone in Shan, where the impacted communities are at risk of forced recruitment and disruption of markets and livelihoods. All IDPs have extremely constrained access to basic services – particularly healthcare. Over 200,000 people have been displaced across Myanmar because of conflict since 1 February 2021. Most IDPs are concentrated in the southeast, where over 140,000 people remain displaced since May 2021.

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