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Lebanon: Update on humanitarian response in Beirut

13 Aug 2020

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Beirut, 8 August 2020. 
Credit: UN/Pasqual Gorriz

The UN and partners continue to respond to humanitarian needs in Lebanon following last week’s blasts in Beirut. 

UNHCR-run mobile health clinics are providing medicines and health services to those most in need, with more than 2,000 people receiving medication for acute and chronic conditions. Hundreds more have received first aid services and psychosocial support. And a dedicated helpline is being established for timely response to requests for assistance.

UNICEF has facilitated the logistics and distribution of 10,000 tetanus vaccines, 42 emergency kits and emergency drugs to primary health-care centres in need.

Some 5,000 female hygiene kits have been provided to affected women and girls, following a UNICEF rapid needs assessment. An additional 2,500 mini-hygiene kits for women and girls have been assembled and will be distributed.

UNICEF is providing food and water alongside clothes and detergents to 700 children and their caregivers.

The container terminal at Beirut Port re-commenced operations on 10 August at approximately 30 per cent capacity. The first ships have already docked, and offloading is under way of bulk wheat.

The capacity at the Beirut Port is expected to increase over the coming week.

Similarly, efforts are under way to increase the operational capacity in Tripoli.

A WFP shipment of 17,500 metric tons of wheat flour is due to arrive at the temporarily operational port of Beirut. The first wheat flour shipment is due to arrive by 20 August.

Meanwhile, COVID-19 is still a significant concern. As of 12 August, 7,413 total cases have been recorded – 50 per cent of total infections recorded to date have been diagnosed in the past two weeks alone.

With physical distancing made even more difficult as a result of the blast, including due to those displaced seeking shelter with families and friends, the number of COVID-19 cases may well continue to sharply rise.