Source UNJLC
Theme Air Transport, Overland Transport, Sea and Rivers Transport, Supply Chain, Border Crossings and Customs
Countries Pakistan
Document type Other
Publication date 19/04/2006

Summary and Highlights

Days since October 8th Earthquake:193

  • IOM has ceased the free transport of humanitarian cargo due to a shortfall in funding.
  • UNJLC is continuing assessments of priority routes in the affected area. Many of these cannot support vehicle transport.
  • Humanitarian air capacity has decreased once again this last week with the redeployment of one UNHAS Mi-8. Further reductions to the fleet will come into effect as of April 23rd.

1 Cargo Transport Update
2.  Road Update
3. IDP Return Process
5. Aviation Update: Helicopter Status

1. Operations Update

Current activity levels remain low as agencies and NGOs await the approval of the Earthquake Reconstruction and Rehabilitation Authority (ERRA) to proceed with the planning of the projects they will undertake during the transition period from relief to recovery. A series of meetings between Cluster leads - both individually and collectively - and ERRA has been held over the last ten days, seeking to reach 'in principle' agreement to the Action Plan. Whilst a few final details remain to be resolved, it is already clear that ERRA is reluctant to approve certain common service projects of little obvious or direct benefit to the affected population. This disproportionate cutting of support service projects could place at risk other projects which have already attracted 'in principle' agreement.

In the case of helicopter support, ERRA appears unwilling to agree to an UNHAS fleet of more than four Mi-8 aircraft, a residual lift capacity of less than 10% of that available to UNHAS until the end of March 2006. This is likely to seriously restrict agencies and NGOs ability to undertake projects in areas inaccessible by road. At the same time the amount of road transport available at no direct cost to the humanitarian community will also reduce significantly. IOM is no longer able to offer such a service, and ATLAS Logistique's plan to do so is likely to be cut back by ERRA by 30%. This is a significant reduction of "free" trucking, and will mean that many agencies and NGOs will need to factor their own transport costs into their project planning, making it difficult for some to keep project costs within the ceilings already set by ERRA.

Finally, the continuation of UNOPS' Remote Reconnaissance Response Teams is also under threat. The loss of these teams would reduce the quality and quantity of road accessibility information available to UNJLC, and hence blunt our ability to determine with any confidence which areas are accessible and which are not.

2. Cargo Transport Update

As mentioned it item 1, IOM has announced that as of April 14th, 2006, it will no longer provide free cargo trucking to the relief community. With the withdrawal of this service, ATLAS Logistique has agreed to increase its capacity available to the humanitarian community. However, due to donor guidelines it cannot accept shipments of reconstruction materials or goods destined for schools. For combined road/air movements that fall outside the ATLAS guidelines the shipper will need to make their own arrangements to transport goods to UNHAS at the hub nearest the final destination. UNJLC will continue to accept the cargo movement requests at this stage for both UNHAS and ATLAS movements.  UNJLC has also posted a survey of local trucking and secondary transport rates on its website. This can be accessed at

3. Road Access

UNJLC field staff are continuing road assessments to assist in mapping and IDP returns. In the Bagh area, the roads from Lasdanna to Haji Pir and Chicotti to Chauki have been surveyed and the data submitted to the UNJLC GIS section. In Muzaffarabad, recces from Ghari Duphatta to Kiamanja, Kkori Bridge to Heer Kulti and Bheri to Machiera have now also been completed by UNJLC and UNDSS. UNJLC's Muzaffarabad field representatives have been equipped with mountain bikes to assist in the process since many of the routes in the area remain inaccessible to vehicles.

UNJLC road assessments, conditions updates and maps can be found at

4. IDP Return Process

IDP returns are continuing from all camps across the affected area, and in the Batagram area only a residual caseload now remains. Bagh returns are taking longer, with only about 20% complete. The program is being hampered by road conditions, especially for moves to Haji Pir. This is a 6 - 8 hour trip by vehicle, and IDPs then have to walk another 5 hours to reach their final destination. The route is currently being cleared and it is hoped this will be completed within the next few days. Meanwhile UNOPS reconnaissance teams have ceased guide support for IDP movements and withdrawn from the field due to lack of project approval from ERRA. IOM is still providing much of the transportation for the returns process, and UNHCR have promised additional funding for this purpose.

6. Aviation Update: Helicopter Status

Helicopter capacity has dropped once again over the last week with the redeployment of one UNHAS Mi-8. As of April 23rd the UNHAS Mi-26 and two Kamov 32s will also leave the country, then a further reduction will take place when the DFID Mi-8s stop flying on May 3rd. After this date, UNHAS will only have four Mi-8s to serve the humanitarian operation until the end of May.

Meanwhile UNHAS, ICRC, Merlin and MSF have all been encountering difficulties obtaining flight authorisation for areas near the Line of Control. This is having a severe impact on operations, including hampering access to agency and NGO medical facilities which are found within this perimeter. These areas are generally inaccessible to vehicle transportation.


As of 19th  April  Number
of aircraft
Aircraft Type  19th April  Comments
UNHAS Tasked Assets:
Mi-8 MT  9 ERRA wishes the UNHAS fleet to be restricted to 4xMi-8.
Kamov 32  2  
Sub-total  12 
Mi-8 MT  1 Operated by ICRC
AS-332 Super Puma   
AB-139  4 Operated by Aga Khan Foundation (Pakistan)
AS-350 Squirrel  Operated by AirServ for MSF Holland
Mi-8T  1 Operated by Merlin
Sub-total   9   

Contact information and addresses: UNJLC Pakistan Earthquake is located at House 10A, Street 2, F-8/3, Islamabad near UN Humanitarian Air Services. Fax: +92 (0)51 285-0003.
UNJLC Pakistan: For matters related to air:
For matters related to roads: For information:

Detailed information on the Clusters managing the humanitarian response, including the Logistics Cluster in which UNJLC plays a key role, is available on Daily situation reports from the UN Emergency Response Centre - Islamabad are available on

In order of funding, UNJLC Pakistan is supported by Norway, New Zealand, the USA and Canada. The United Kingdom has provided valuable in-kind contributions through DFID. Seconded staff have been provided by Australia (through RedR Australia), Denmark (DRC), Germany (THW), Sweden (SRSA), Norway (NRC), the UK (DFID), the Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation and UNICEF.