Sri Lanka 2017
The three decade armed conflict in Sri Lanka ended in 2009, having led to the displacement of over 300,000 people in the Northern and Eastern provinces and the formation of a large refugee population of 102,000 in the Indian State of Tamil Nadu which has traditionally hosted Sri Lankan refugees since 1983. At the beginning of 2012, the vast majority of the displaced was able to resettle, relocate and received multi sectoral support by efforts from the Sri Lankan government and the international community. But many still await the assistance and protection to which they are entitled. Even among populations who have returned, there are those who have not found a durable solution and continue to be vulnerable as a result of their displacement. By the 31 August 2016, a total 882,392 persons of 253,231 families have been resettled. 43,607 persons of 13,670 families from Northern and Eastern provinces are yet to be resettled. The present government is committed to steadily progress the national reconciliation and peace agenda. IOM, together with its UN partners, is dedicated to support the Government in this regard and in effect the implementation of the peace-building priority plan approved by the Government of Sri Lanka in September 2016. The PPP aims at strengthening capacities to undertake reforms to advance peacebuilding and transitional justice processes in Sri Lanka. Under this IOM aims at strengthening transitional justice and governance mechanisms.
The current context also allows Sri Lankan refugees in Tamil Nadu to return to Sri Lanka in larger numbers. A total of 4,870 such refugees have returned back to Sri Lanka from 2011 up until 31st of July, 2016. IOM will support the voluntary return of the Sri Lankan refugees in Tamil Nadu and to facilitate reintegration process in collaboration with the GoSL and UNHCR.
Besides the post-conflict context and its challenges the country is frequent occurrence of natural disasters such as floods, landslides, and drought. The ongoing drought in the country has affected over 250,000 across the country and left only 35 percent of lands suitable for cultivation. Severe food insecurity is forecasted. While the water, food security and immediate health needs already being addressed by the government and humanitarian partners, including UN, the long term livelihood needs still need to be addressed. IOM as one of the key actors in the community stabilization context of Sri Lanka will continue to look forward to work with the farming community in disaster affected areas to support renovation and rehabilitation of irrigation resources particularly in the newly relocated areas of the country.
Continuing on the emergency response phase, IOM will in 2017 continues to provide early recovery support and community stabilization to landslide affected communities in Kegalle district. IOM is part of the Sri Lanka UN Country Team and UN Humanitarian Country team. IOM is co-leading the Shelter/Non-Food Item cluster and is well reputed for Shelter activities in the past 13 years. In 2016, IOM Sri Lanka received funding for shelter and NFIs from CERF for the landslide and flood response and continued to engage with UN agencies and CERF for any potential funding in the near future in the possibility of a severe drought in 2017. Similarly, IOM is also looking forward to approaching interested donors for community livelihood, DRR and stabilization activities in Kegalle district of Sabaragamuwa province.
Note: Interventions are in line with IOM’s Migration Crisis Operational Framework to address migration issues and initiate development-principled programming to establish the foundations for longer-term recovery to complement its humanitarian programmes.
 National Policy on Durable Solutions (August 2016), http://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/final%20policy.pdf
 Ministry of Resettlement, Reconstruction and Hindu Religious Affairs, http://resettlementmin.gov.lk/site/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=5&Itemid=21&lang=en
Overall Targeted Beneficiaries: 4,000 refugees and 300 government officials
Contact Information: Mr Giuseppe CROCETTI, Chief of Mission, [email@example.com]. Website: http://srilanka.iom.int/
IOM Offices: Country Office: Colombo; Sub-Offices: Killinochchi, Jaffna, and Batticaloa; Presence in the entire North and Eastern Provinces of Sri Lanka.
International Staff: 6
National Staff: 100+
- IOM delivered 286 Transitional shelters, 300 emergency tents, 600 shelter kits, 1,750 NFI kits and 170 latrines, 300 water tanks and other WASH assistance to the landslide affected victims of Kegalle District in the Sabrgamuwa province through CERF. The shelter assistance in particular and the relocation elements have demonstrated a clear direction towards positive long term impact in Kegalle; particularly notable is that IOM Transitional shelter programming included electricity, WASH, NFIs, and by creating community emphasis— pushed the government basic services (Electricity, Water) to move forward quickly resulting in the early success of a systematic community stabilization.