UNDP provided 1,000 heaters to households affected by northwestern Iran earthquake. Photo Credit: S. Nikzad l UN Iran


In the early hours of 8th November, an earthquake with magnitude of 5.9 struck northwestern Iran, as a result of which, 5 people lost their lives and 584 people were injured in the 74 villages affected.

Iran is ranked among the 10 most disaster-prone countries in the world. It is confronted with more than 34 out of 41 types of the world’s known natural disasters.

A request was made by the Islamic Republic of Iran’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and National Disaster Management Organization to the United Nations team in Iran to support the government’s efforts and response to those affected by the disaster.

Considering the cold weather conditions, and after discussions with government counterpart it was agreed for UNDP to purchase and provide 1,000 heaters for the affected households of the area.

UNDP Resident Representative, Mr. Claudio Providas visited Miyaneh – one of the most affected cities – to show solidarity and to take part in a handover ceremony with Governor General of Miyaneh, Mr. Mohammadreza Mashayekhi.

During their meeting Mr. Mashayekhi said: “UNDP’s humanitarian support is welcomed and appreciated by the local community.” He emphasized on working with UN to find innovative long-term solutions for shelter and in this regards, Mr. Mashayekhi said: “our message is to work together more closely towards building more resilient cities and villages.”

Mr. Providas saluted the government’s recovery efforts and expressed condolences for lives lost and said: “I am here to show solidarity with the affected people on behalf of the UN, and our support is a drop in the ocean in comparison to what the local authorities have done.”

Ideas were discussed on improving the quality and readiness of transitional shelter solutions. UNDP can make avialbale best practices and innovative solutions from all around globe that can be relevant to the local conditions using of local materials and creating job opportunities.

In regard to road to recovery Mr. Providas said: “Recovery helps people to get back on the road to development. UNDP supports recovery that helps people build back better, and that reduces risk and builds resilience. By partnering with national governments, NGOs, civil society groups and communities, UNDP emphasizes the human and social aspects of recovery. UNDP stands ready to support the Government of Iran’s recovery efforts.”

Following the meeting, provincial authorities together with a team from NDMO and UNDP visited two villages where they had a chance to interact with the local community and hand over the UNDP purchased heaters to the affected households. Mr Providas acknowledge the rapid response by MFA, NDMO and the Governor.

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