Syrian Arab Republic

Context analysis

The Syrian conflict has entered its fifth year as government, anti-government and armed opposition groups battle for power. With no political solution forthcoming, the conflict is the biggest active humanitarian crisis in the world with 12.2 million people in need of aid and protection. Almost half the population is under siege and aid workers – mostly from the very same besieged communities - risk their lives to deliver life-saving aid. Despite appeals by the United Nations that parties to the conflict meet their obligations to allow aid groups access to deliver much needed food, water, and medicine, humanitarian action continues to be curtailed and attacked. With an estimated 3 million people in need in ‘hard to reach’ places, more than 4 million displaced internally and over a quarter of a million people besieged in cities, towns and villages, humanitarian organisations are working tirelessly to provide aid under increasingly perilous conditions.

OPERATIONAL SINCE
2014

INSO FACTS & FIGURES

45
STAFF
158
NGO
MEMBERS
13.5 M
PEOPLE IN NEED
(OCHA)

Gross Incident Rate

Jan to Oct 2017

The Gross Incident Rate (GIR) consists of all security incidents recorded and reported by INSO in this country for the stated period with no disaggregation or exclusion. It includes conflict and criminal related incidents; serious (i.e. bombings) and non-serious events (i.e. demonstrations); and both security improving (i.e. arrests/seizures) and security-deteriorating incidents (i.e. attacks). The Gross Incident Rate is valuable in providing a snapshot of the overall level of volatility in the country.  It is not valuable in assessing the specific risk to NGOs and/or whether a situation is becoming better or worse as changes in the GIR may be caused by both positive (more arrests) or negative (more attacks) trends.
TOTAL
Jan to Oct 2017
Total incidents recorded in Syria this year to date. Updated monthly.




40068
INCIDENTS
PER MONTH
Jan to Oct 2017
Total incidents per month for the current year to date. Updated monthly.


Roll mouse over chart for exact numbers.


AUTHOR
Jan to Oct 2017
Percentage of incidents by author* 
(conflict / criminal). Updated monthly.


Roll mouse over chart for exact percentages.


NGO INCIDENT Rate

Jan to Oct 2017

The NGO Incident Rate (NIR) comprises a gross count of all incidents that involved an NGO in this country for the stated time period. It includes both criminal and conflict related events; serious (i.e. killings/abductions) and non-serious (i.e. threats, petty robbery) incidents; and occurrences of both direct, indirect and/or accidental/collateral involvement. The NIR is valuable in evaluating NGO general exposure to ambient insecurity in this country and whether there is a negative or positive directional trend over time. Where the NIR shows no clear pattern over time, specific NGO targeting is assumed not to be present however it is important to remember that rate changes are also affected by per-capita density and NGO mobility. Neither INSO nor any other entity we are aware of has meaningful data on these two components, meaning that numbers should be taken as gross indicators only.  

Total
Jan to Oct 2017
Total NGO incidents reported in Syria this year to date. Updated monthly.




110
NGO INCIDENTS
PER MONTH
Jan to Oct 2017
Total NGO incidents per month for the current year to date. Updated monthly.


Roll mouse over chart for exact numbers.


Type
Jan to Oct 2017
Percentage of incidents by type* (SAF, IED, intimidation etc). Updated monthly.


Roll mouse over chart for exact percentages.


NGO Fatality Rate

Jan to Oct 2017

The NGO Fatality Rate (NFR) comprises a total count of all NGO workers that have been killed or died in this country for the stated period. The count includes the national and international staff of NGOs and the Red Cross organisations only and does not include the staff of the United Nations unless otherwise stated. The count includes both criminal and conflict related causes; targeted and accidental deaths and all types of weapons/tactics. The NGO Fatality Rate works with the NIR and is valuable in determining the likelihood of this most serious result and whether there is a negative or positive directional trend over time. Where there is no clear upwards trend in NGO deaths, we assess that systematic targeting of NGOs does not exist and that deaths rather occur as a result of exposure to ambient insecurity albeit with occasional targeted events.

TOTAL
Jan to Oct 2017
Total NGO fatalities in Syria this year to date. Updated monthly.




19
NGO FATALITIES
PER MONTH
Jan to Oct 2017
Total NGO fatalities per month for the current year to date. Updated monthly.


Roll mouse over chart for exact numbers.


NATIONALITY
Jan to Oct 2017
Percentage of national and international NGO staff fatalities. Updated monthly.


Roll mouse over chart for exact percentages.


NGO Injury Rate

Jan to Oct 2017

The NGO Injury Rate comprises a total count of all NGO workers that have been injured in this country for the stated period. The count includes the national and international staff of NGOs and the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement only and does not include the staff of the United Nations unless otherwise stated. The count includes both accidental and deliberate causes. In the case where an individual subsequently dies from their injuries, they have been removed from this count and added to the NFR.
Total
Jan to Oct 2017
Total NGO injuries in Syria this year to date. Updated monthly.




31
NGO INJURIES
PER MONTH
Jan to Oct 2017
Total NGO injuries per month for the current year to date. Updated monthly.


Roll mouse over chart for exact numbers.


NATIONALITY
Jan to Oct 2017
Percentage of national and international NGO staff injuries. Updated monthly.


Roll mouse over chart for exact percentages.


NGO Abduction Rate

Jan to Oct 2017

The NGO Abduction Rate comprises a total count of all NGO workers that have been abducted in this country for the stated period. The count includes the national and international staff of NGOs and the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement only and does not include the staff of the United Nations unless otherwise stated. For this purpose "abduction" includes all cases of NGO workers being taken against their will and unlawfully for any purpose and for any duration. Some abductions turn in to kidnapping (where political or criminal demands are made) and some in to detentions (where the victim is released without demand).
Total
Jan to Oct 2017
Total NGO abductions in Syria this year to date. Updated monthly.




10
NGO ABDUCTONS
PER MONTH
Jan to Oct 2017
Total NGO abductions per month for the current year to date. Updated monthly.


Roll mouse over chart for exact numbers.


NATIONALITY
Jan to Oct 2017
Percentage of national and international NGO staff abductions. Updated monthly.


Roll mouse over chart for exact percentages.


ALERTS SENT
192
REPORTS SENT
1061
NGO ROUNDTABLES HOSTED
52
SECURITY ASSESSMENTS
174
INSO NGO Service Register: Jan to Oct 2017

Key Risks & Mitigation Measures

Risk

Exposure to both direct and indirect fire: As the tactics in the Syrian war mostly constitutes the use direct and indirect fire, such as airstrikes, barrel bombs, artillery and mortars, all fairly non-precision weapons, NGO staff and structures are at high risk of suffering direct or collateral damage. The bulk of NGO incidents recorded have been damage caused to infrastructure, such as hospitals, ambulances, and other assets. In some cases direct targeting is suspected.

Risk

Mistrust of NGOs by armed actors: Intrusions into humanitarian offices by armed personnel or the detainment of NGO staff, all linked to screening activities, have been a regular occurrence. In most cases these incidents are non-violent and detained staff are released. This risk is further complicated by the lack of clarify with regards to the different attitudes of the various conflict actors towards NGO presence.

Risk

Intimidation and threats towards NGOs: Although underreported, and likely to be underestimated, anecdotal feedback points towards high numbers of verbal threats to NGO staff. Threats are made by both beneficiaries and people excluded from beneficiary lists and also occur in relation to the hiring and firing of local staff.

Mitigation

Identify and avoid areas of close proximity to conflict actors in order to minimize proximity to targets; ensure protective measures such as installing anti-blast film on glass windows, hardening compound roof. Ensure persons transiting to and from the location are made aware of potential targets in the vicinity. Where possible locate operations inside the most solid structures or underground and limit visibility.

Mitigation

It is imperative that NGOs are pro-active in their transparency towards all key stakeholders in their areas of operation, including towards all armed actors. Transparency includes explaining the areas in which they work, what kind of programming they conduct and communicate the neutral nature of their programming.

Mitigation

In order to reduce grievances, NGOs should aim to be as transparent as possible with regards to selection processes in defining beneficiary lists and define SOPs outlining hiring and firing procedures. These SOPs should be shared with the NGO staff and with local stakeholders. NGOs should also emphasise their strict adherence thereto. The net effect should reduce the likelihood of intimidation or lower the impact of any which does occur.

Risk

Exposure to both direct and indirect fire: As the tactics in the Syrian war mostly constitutes the use direct and indirect fire, such as airstrikes, barrel bombs, artillery and mortars, all fairly non-precision weapons, NGO staff and structures are at high risk of suffering direct or collateral damage. The bulk of NGO incidents recorded have been damage caused to infrastructure, such as hospitals, ambulances, and other assets. In some cases direct targeting is suspected.

Mitigation

Identify and avoid areas of close proximity to conflict actors in order to minimize proximity to targets; ensure protective measures such as installing anti-blast film on glass windows, hardening compound roof. Ensure persons transiting to and from the location are made aware of potential targets in the vicinity. Where possible locate operations inside the most solid structures or underground and limit visibility.


Risk

Mistrust of NGOs by armed actors: Intrusions into humanitarian offices by armed personnel or the detainment of NGO staff, all linked to screening activities, have been a regular occurrence. In most cases these incidents are non-violent and detained staff are released. This risk is further complicated by the lack of clarify with regards to the different attitudes of the various conflict actors towards NGO presence.

Mitigation

It is imperative that NGOs are pro-active in their transparency towards all key stakeholders in their areas of operation, including towards all armed actors. Transparency includes explaining the areas in which they work, what kind of programming they conduct and communicate the neutral nature of their programming.


Risk

Intimidation and threats towards NGOs: Although underreported, and likely to be underestimated, anecdotal feedback points towards high numbers of verbal threats to NGO staff. Threats are made by both beneficiaries and people excluded from beneficiary lists and also occur in relation to the hiring and firing of local staff.

Mitigation

In order to reduce grievances, NGOs should aim to be as transparent as possible with regards to selection processes in defining beneficiary lists and define SOPs outlining hiring and firing procedures. These SOPs should be shared with the NGO staff and with local stakeholders. NGOs should also emphasise their strict adherence thereto. The net effect should reduce the likelihood of intimidation or lower the impact of any which does occur.