A significant step towards safer humanitarian access in south Lebanon

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23 May 2024

A significant step towards safer humanitarian access in south Lebanon

Humanitarian UN Agencies, international and national NGOs and UNIFIL met to improve communication and situational awareness among humanitarian organizations operating in UNIFIL’s eastern sector of its area of operations.

The meeting brought together three UN agencies (OCHA, UNHCR, and WFP), seven international NGOs (NRCACFINTERSOS, DCA, World Vision, Premiere Urgence InternationalSave the Children, and AVSI), and four national NGOs (Caritas, NUSANED, Amel Association, and SHEILD).

Since 8 October 2023 the above humanitarian actors have mobilized to reach and assists the population of south Lebanon, particularly those most affected by the continuous exchanges of fire across the Blue Line.

OCHA, the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, highlighted the ongoing humanitarian missions to areas close to the Blue Line since October 2023, with over 31 missions conducted in the South and Nabatiyeh Governorates alone. OCHA emphasized the need to support 72,350 civilians in conflict-affected areas, focusing on health, education, and multi-purpose cash assistance.

Various UN engagements with communities have indicated that the support is critical, especially for chronic disease medications, educational services for children, food security, and access to other basic services.

UNIFIL stressed the importance of the protection of civilians and improved coordination to support this.

A key point raised by all was a higher level of coordination between all humanitarian actors and above all improved communication. The Commander of UNIFIL’s eastern sector proposed regular security briefings to maintain this communication and enhance protection of humanitarian workers, to ensure continuous access and support to affected communities.

The meeting fostered dialogue between UNIFIL and humanitarian actors, marking a significant step towards safer humanitarian access in the south. The large turnout and active participation demonstrated a strong commitment to supporting conflict-affected local communities.

Click on the links of the NGOs and UN Organizations to read about their humanitarian work in Lebanon.