Syria
Emergency Response to Wildfires in Syria
Japanese

New Coronavirus Spreads to Areas Affected by the Wildfires

30th January 2021 10:00

In Syria, where JPF and our member NGOs are planning to provide support to those affected by the wildfires, there are no signs of the new coronavirus pandemic subsiding.

In the beginning of this month, more than 40,000 cases have been reported across Syria*. Between 1,000 and 2,000 cases have been reported in the coastal governorates of Latakia, Tartus, and Homs, which were affected by the wildfires. The actual number of cases is expected to be higher than officially announced due to the lack of widespread availability of test kits. Assistance is needed as Syria was already in the midst of a humanitarian crisis, and there are fears that conditions may further deteriorate.

*Syrian Arab Republic COVID-19 Response Update No.14

Wildfires in Syria

24th December 2020 7:00

The intermittent wildfires that had been raging in northwestern Syria since July of this year spread to the coastal governorates in October, affecting 40,000 households.

In Syria, there was already a lack of infrastructure such as roads, hospitals, and water supply systems due to the civil crisis. People were also affected by the new coronavirus pandemic. The wildfires have now added further damages to the lives of residents, whose lives were already in dire strait, as they lost their homes and means of livelihood. Working with our member NGOs, JPF is preparing to deliver the necessary support to the more vulnerable among those affected by the wildfires.

Decision to Launch

9th November 2020 18:29

Japan Platform (JPF) has decided to launch an emergency response program to support the people affected by the wildfires in the coastal areas of Syria.

Wildfires had been occurring intermittently in northwest regions of Syria since July this year, but on 8 October, a new series of wildfires occurred in the coastal governorate of Latakia and spread to Tartus and Homs governorates. WFP reported that between 1 September and 15 October, the total area of farmland and forest destroyed by the fires was estimated to be about 30,000 hectares.

Given the loss of livelihoods due to the burning of homes and farmlands and the damages to electricity and water infrastructure, JPF and its member NGOs will implement assistance activities that meet the local needs to prevent the further deterioration of the humanitarian crisis in Syria. We intend to provide food, shelter, NFIs (Non-food items), WASH (water, sanitation, and hygiene), and cash assistance.

We will be posting regular updates on our website and on social media.

On 2 November, Japan Platform (JPF) has decided to launch an emergency response program to support the people affected by the wildfires in the coastal areas of Syria.

<Overview>

Wildfires had been occurring intermittently in northwest regions of Syria since July this year. On 8 October, a new series of wildfires occurred in the coastal governorate of Latakia and spread to Tartus and Homs governorates. WFP reported that between 1 September and 15 October, the total area of farmland and forest destroyed by the fires was estimated to be about 30,000 hectares*1.

Status of wildfires in the coastal areas of Syria
Status of wildfires in the coastal areas of Syria

Between 8 and 12 October, three deaths and about 80 injuries have been confirmed, and 200,000 people in 40,000 households were affected including their homes and farmlands being burned*2. In addition, electricity and water supply have been cut off and access to public services such as hospitals have been restricted. Some 25,000 people have taken refuge in host communities and temporary shelters at schools and are unlikely to be able to immediately return to the areas severely affected by the fires*3. UN agencies are working with humanitarian organizations to provide emergency relief, including the distribution of food and other essential items, and are coordinating with local governments.

Given the loss of livelihoods due to the burning of homes and farmlands and the damages to electricity and water infrastructure, JPF and its member NGOs will implement assistance activities that meet the local needs to prevent further deterioration of the humanitarian crisis in Syria. We intend to provide food, shelter, NFIs (Non-food items), WASH (water, sanitation, and hygiene), and cash assistance.

As COVID-19 cases have been reported in the areas affected by the wildfires, JPF will provide the necessary assistance to the people in need while we exchange information with our partner organizations and pay close attention to infection prevention. We will be posting regular updates on JPF's website and Facebook page. (*For security reasons, we will not disclose the specific names of organizations and projects in Syria.)

*1 WFP, Syria Fire Incidents Analysis of Fires Outbreak Across Syria September - October 2020, 19 October 2020
*2 SARC, Syria Wildfires Emergency Action of Plan, 23 October 2020
*3 OCHA, Syria Flash Update #01 Humanitarian Impact of Wildfires in Coastal Areas, 11 October 2020

Program Overview

Term 6 months, Initial Response Period
Budget 60 million yen (government subsidies)
Location Areas affected by the wildfires in Syria