DRC preparing for emergency response in Côte d’Ivoire
The Danish Refuge Council (DRC) is preparing for another round of attacks across the Liberian border into Côte d’Ivoire. During attacks in April causing 6000 IDPs the organizations efficient emergency response proved vital.
According to a report from Human Rights Watch groups of Liberian returnees, Ivorian refugees and former mercenaries supporting the former Ivorian president Gbagbo are mobilizing militias and planning attacks into Côte d’Ivoire. The potential attacks will be targeting communities supportive of the new Ivorian president Ouattara.
“With humanitarian operations on both sides of the border we have dealt with instability and sudden displacement over the years. We responded to the crisis last year and the recent attacks in April with an emergency relief operation and we are preparing to respond to new incidents,” says program coordinator Elsa Moreno Cardenas.
The DRC emergency response includes distribution of food and non-food items such as canvas, jerry cans and blankets as well as distribution of water cleaning kits.
“We have the capacity to provide emergency relief but we also prepare support to families hosting refugees, psycho-social support to victims of violence and reconstruction of houses and infrastructure,“ says Elsa Moreno Cardenas.
DRC has a broad humanitarian operation in Liberia, Guinea and Côte d’Ivoire focusing on emergency relief, early recovery and durable solutions. The projects include infrastructure, livelihoods and food security as well as emergency relief.
“In a region defined by extreme poverty and lack of possibilities flexibility remains vital. We must never lose sight of durable solutions, and in our experience the combination of activities long term activities and emergency response can function extremely efficient,” says Elsa Moreno Cardenas.
DRC has worked in West Africa since 1998, working with displaced people in southeast Liberia. In 2006, DRC opted for a regional strategy in response to continued conflict and displacement across the border between Liberia, Côte d’Ivoire and Guinea.