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28-Sep-2023 00:03:06
More than 16,000 children are displaced in eastern Libya following Africa’s deadliest storm in recorded history, UNICEF warned. UNICEF

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1. Wide shot, a convoy of cars and ambulance vehicles drove through the destroyed city center of Derna, Libya, which was built 350 years ago, Alsahaba Mosque in the background, an excavator is moving rubble
2. Wide shot, cars driving on a damaged road
3. Wide shot, empty room filled with mud
4. Wide shot, destroyed car surrounded by debris
5. Close up, a destroyed car surrounded by debris
6. Wide shot, room with some household items filled with mud
7. Wide shot, bedroom with some household items filled with mud
8. Wide shot, interior shot of a house with some household items filled with mud
9. Close up, same as the above shot
10. Wide shot, several houses overlooking the sea
11. Wide shot, truck full of goods, and a man is unloading them
12. Wide shot, car driving between debris
13. Wide shot, pan-left shot showing debris
14. Wide shot, the city of Derna with cars, people, and aid teams in action
15. Wide shot, destroyed car surrounded by debris
16. Wide shot, helicopter in the sky
17. Tilt down, showing a broken door filled with debris
18. Wide shot, the city of Derna with cars and ambulance vehicles passing through the area
19. Wide shot, three people overlooking the debris of the city
20. Wide shot, the city of Derna with excavators, cars, and people scattered in the area
21. Wide shot, Debris on the floor of a corridor inside the destroyed Alfatih school, in the Almaghar area in the city of Derna
22. Wide shot, destroyed car on the streets of Derna, Libya, at night
23. Areal shot, panoramic shot from a destroyed building with people observing the situation from a distance
24. Areal shot, the same scenery a bit closer
25. Areal shot, cars lined up in traffic between the debris of the city. People are observing the situation
26. Areal shot, Debris in the city
27. Areal shot, rescue teams and excavators among the debris of the city
28. Tilt down, destroyed building


More than 16,000 children are displaced in eastern Libya following Africa’s deadliest storm in recorded history, UNICEF warned today (28 Sep). Their psychosocial wellbeing is at stake. Many more children are affected due to lack of essential services, such as health, schooling and safe water supply.

Storm Daniel struck eastern Libya on 10 September and left widespread flooding and destruction in its wake across Derna, Albayda, Soussa, Al-Marj, Shahat, Taknis, Battah, Tolmeita, Bersis, Tokra and Al-Abyar.

Some of the displaced families are hosted in schools. UNICEF has been working with authorities and partners since the beginning of the tragedy to respond to the urgent needs of children and families in the affected areas.

“When disasters hit, children are always among the most vulnerable,” said Adele Khodr, UNICEF Regional Director in the Middle East and North Africa, who has just returned from a visit to Al Bayda and Derna.

“I saw the devastating toll the floods have already taken on children and families. I met families grappling with a high psychological burden and I spoke to children in extreme distress, many not sleeping and unable to interact and play. The memory of what happened still haunts their dreams and their thoughts. Now is the time to focus on recovery, including support the reopening of schools, provide psychosocial support, rehabilitate primary health care facilities and restore water systems. The tragedy is not over, and we should not forget the children of Derna and Al Bayda.”

While the number of children among the casualties is not yet confirmed, UNICEF fears hundreds of children died in the disaster, given that children account for about 40 percent of the population.

Significant damage to health and education infrastructure means children once again risk further disruption to their learning and the outbreak of deadly diseases. In the hit region, out of 117 impacted schools, 4 were destroyed and 80 partially damaged.

Waterborne illnesses are a growing concern due to water supply issues, significant damage to water sources and sewer networks, and the risk of contamination of the ground water. In Derna alone, 50 percent of water systems are estimated to have been damaged.

UNICEF has been actively supporting the children in eastern Libya since day two of the crisis. Sixty-five metric tonnes of relief supplies have been delivered to affected areas, including medical supplies for 50,000 people for three months, family hygiene kits for almost 17,000 people, 500 children’s winter clothing sets, 200 school-in-a-box kits and 32,000 water purification tablets. UNICEF has also dispatched mobile child protection and psychosocial support teams to help children cope with the emotional toll of the disaster.

“As we continue our life-saving response efforts, we also appeal to the authorities and donors to invest in long-term recovery that is equitable, resilient and child-focused,” added Khodr following her visit to the regions impacted by the floods.

UNICEF is revising its humanitarian response appeal of US$6.5 million to integrate initial recovery efforts with a focus on education, health and water. To date, UNICEF has received about 25 percent of these much-needed funds.
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