• Crisis Severity ?
    2.6
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Impact ?
    2.3
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Humanitarian Conditions ?
    2.7
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Complexity ?
    2.7
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Access Constraints ?
    2.0
    No constraints
    Extreme constraints

Overview

20/09/2022

Since May 2022, violence has heightened in the Highlands region of Papua New Guinea. The most affected provinces have been Enga, Hela, Southern Highlands, and Western Highlands. Political and electoral violence occurred during the electoral period (May–August 2022). Intercommunal tensions and conflicts between clans because of issues such as land and other unsettled disputes had already been contributing to violence in the region. Tensions and violence between rival political groups and candidates during the elections aggravated the existing conflict. The reallocation of security forces to support the election process also thinned out overall security, leading to further intercommunal violence. The announcement of election results also met delays and faced challenges, and electoral fraud allegations marred the period. ?

Since May, officials have reported killings, including of women and children; sexual violence against women and girls; and sorcery-accusation-related violence against women. Conflict has also destroyed homes, schools, hospitals, churches, and businesses. The violence has displaced people within and outside their respective provinces. Many have found refuge in churches or with host communities, which are stressing to meet the basic needs of the displaced and the host communities. Some of the displaced have also fled to neighbouring mountains, where there is limited access to basic services. Humanitarian responders have very limited access to such areas. ?

The most affected areas and those with the most urgent humanitarian needs are the districts of Kompiam, Laiagam, Porgera (Enga), Magarima (Hela), and Nipa (Southern Highlands). As at 16 September 2022, there was still active violence in these areas. ?

Security issues have been hindering situation and needs assessments, but around 90,000 people could be displaced and around 265,000 people in need of urgent humanitarian assistance. ?

Key Priorities

20/09/2022

Shelter and NFIs: The displaced people need shelter, as conflict has damaged or destroyed many homes. Shelters need safe spaces to ensure the safety and privacy of children and women. The affected people with damaged or destroyed houses need repair and rehabilitation assistance, including shelter repair kits comprising construction tools and materials. Affected people also need NFIs, including blankets, clothes, lamps, mobile charging ports, floor mattresses, bags for storing household items, water containers, water purification tablets, and fuel for cooking. ?

Food security and livelihoods: IDPs need food, especially fresh produce, protein, and fortified food. Affected pregnant and lactating women and children under five years of age need micronutrient supplementations. The destruction of shops and food gardens has severely affected the livelihood of at least 1,000 people. They need livelihood assistance in the form of agriculture inputs, such as seeds, equipment, and training. ?

Health and WASH: There is a need for medicines, medical supplies, and medical services, as well as dignity and reproductive health kits comprising basic hygiene supplies. Women and girls, especially rape and sorcery accusation victims, need safe birthing supplies, post-rape treatment kits, and test kits for sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy. They also need mental health and psychosocial support. Affected people, especially IDPs, need potable water for sanitation and hygiene practices and for drinking and cooking. ?

Education: Affected children need home-learning packs and remote-learning support. There is a need for school-in-a-box kits, tents, and early child development kits to set up temporary learning spaces. Longer-term solutions include repairing damaged schools. ?