May 30, 2008

On May 29, around 11 a.m., a bomb targeting a military recruitment center surrounded by civilian locations exploded in the town of Sinjar, Ninawa Governorate, in Northern Iraq causing at least 16 deaths and a high number of wounded, among them many civilians. Sixty patients have so far been received in the local hospital which, as most medical structures in Iraq, faces a dire lack of medical material and qualified staff.

May 27, 2008

On Friday, May 23, a fire destroyed close to 60 percent of the houses in the Huai Nam Khao refugee camp in Petchabun province in northern Thailand. The blaze took hold after a week-long demonstration in the camp, which is home to nearly 8,000 Lao Hmong refugees, to protest the arrest of a community leader and the imminent threat of a forced return to Laos.

May 27, 2008

Two weeks ago, MSF launched a nutritional intervention in some areas of the southern region of Oromiya in Ethiopia, following assessments that showed alarming levels of malnutrition among children under five.

May 23, 2008

The Chinese government is now estimating that more than 5 million have been left homeless by the 8.0-magnitude earthquake that devastated parts of the country’s Sichuan province 12 days ago. A total of 34 MSF team members are now in the affected region and have been carrying out assessments, providing surgical and basic medical care, as well as mental health services, and donating tents and medicines to the relief effort. The local, regional, and national response has been enormous, but some of the needs, especially in the area of shelter, remain.

May 23, 2008

MSF now has more than 250 staff on the ground in Myanmar's Irrawaddy Delta, with a total of 33 medical teams. MSF teams have reached around 120,000 people to provide medical and relief assistance. These teams have distributed at least 310 metric tons of rice, more than 84,000 cans of fish, 16,500 liters of cooking oil, and 13,500 plastic sheets for building shelters.

May 23, 2008

In Niger, a meningitis mass-vaccination campaign launched by MSF, in cooperation with the local Ministry of Health (MoH), has ended. The aim was to prevent a large-scale epidemic after a number of cases had been reported in late March. More than 300,000 people were vaccinated in 20 days with positive results—the spread of the epidemic was stemmed.

May 21, 2008

Françoise Bouchet-Saulnier, author of The Practical Guide to Humanitarian Law, considers the notion of the “responsibility to protect,” which has been raised, incorrectly, given the obstacles to international assistance in Myanmar following Cyclone Nargis. She is the legal director of MSF in France.

May 20, 2008

In response to recent outbreaks of violence against migrants in Johannesburg, South Africa, MSF is currently providing emergency medical care for wounded people seeking shelter in police stations, community halls, and other locations to which they have fled for safety.

May 19, 2008

A week after a 7.9 magnitude earthquake killed a reported 32,000 and left up to 4.8 million people homeless in China’s southwestern Sichuan province, MSF has now provided over 210 tons of relief supplies as well as medical assistance to the survivors.

May 16, 2008

MSF teams have been assessing the immediate health needs in several affected areas of Sichuan. The results from the initial assessment indicate urgent needs for shelters, drinking water, medical and sanitation supplies. Most pharmacies in the area were destroyed by the quake, and people are facing a dire shortage of medicines. Therefore, MSF is planning to send medicine and medical supplies to Chengdu.