Chad: Situation in the Lac region and impact of the Nigerian crisis Situation Report n° 25 (10/07/2017)

Highlights

  • The situation is marked by a deterioration in the protection of civilians in the border areas of Kaiga Kindjiria and Tchoukoutalia, where several villages have reportedly been attacked.

  • New displacements were observed as a result of security incidents.

  • At the same time, return dynamics continue: 11,000 people in need that returned to their villages of origin were identified following a multisector assessment in Kangalom subprefecture.

  • 160 protection incidents and 134 cases of gender-based violence were reported in May.

  • 19 new outpatient nutritional units were opened, allowing the treating of more than 3,000 cases of severe acute malnutrition in May, 20 per cent more than the previous month.

  • At the mid-year point, the 2017 Humanitarian Response Plan to the crisis in the Lac region of Chad has received only 18 per cent of the funds required for its implementation.

Situation Overview

The security situation is marked by a deterioration in the protection of civilians in Kaiga Kindjiria and Tchoukoutalia border areas, which is related to ongoing military operations in Niger and Nigeria and multiple attacks and incursions of armed elements in the Lac region. Since the attack on 5 May in Kaiga Kindjiria, a dozen village attacks have been reported, particularly in Kaiga Kindjiria and Tchoukoutalia areas, which allegedly resulted in the deaths of some 15 civilians. Attacks involve multiple violations of human rights, including the killing and kidnapping of civilians, the destruction of material property, and the theft of livestock. In this context, it is necessary to ensure the protection of civilians and to enhance security in return areas and particularly in areas where the redeployment of the military has created a security vacuum. The resurgence of attacks has a negative impact on humanitarian access, limiting humanitarian interventions in Kaiga Kindjiria and Tchoukoutalia areas, where, according to the Shelter/NFI/CCCM update of January 2017, approximately 15,000 people are displaced.

In June, more than 100 people having allegedly surrendered, mostly women and children, reportedly presented themselves to the authorities in border areas, mostly in Tchoukoutalia. Among them, two were armed and surrendered their weapons to the authorities. Three major waves of people allegedly surrendering followed: 23 people on 14 June (including 6 women and 9 children), 23 on 21 June (including 14 women and children), and the largest wave on 22 June, with 57 people including 10 women and 38 children accompanied by livestock and animals. These people reportedly come from Ngouboua and Liwa sub-prefectures. The management of people having allegedly surrendered is first carried out by military authorities, who then transfer them to administrative authorities in order for these persons to be placed under the responsibility of the chiefs of their villages of origin.

Following the attack on 5 May in Kaiga Kindjiria, which resulted in the deaths of five civilians, a humanitarian assessment mission was carried out by the Shelter/NFI/CCCM cluster from 23 to 25 May. Of the twelve sites covered by the mission, five reportedly host newly displaced persons following the attack (Diamerom, Magui, Taboua, Djilkori and Kiskawa). More than 700 people (169 households), including 124 from Kaiga Kindjiria and 45 from Niger, have added themselves to the more than 8,000 persons already living in these sites.

For some, this displacement is allegedly already the second since their initial displacement from their village of origin, but they have never been registered as displaced by partners from the CCCM cluster. No new site appears to have been created following the attack on 5 May. None of the newly displaced said they were ready to return to Kaiga Kindjiria, due to a feeling of insecurity. Finally, prior to the attack on 5 May, some displaced persons were going to Kaiga Kindjiria area for agricultural work; the attack has limited access to fertile areas, with consequences for the food security of the displaced people in these sites.

Other displacements related to recent attacks have been reported. On 28 June, a new site was discovered by the NGO ACF in Kiskra Canton, less than 3 km before Digou 3 village on the road between Kiskra and Diamérom.

Around 200 people have reportedly been displaced since 26 June. They were coming from the Tchoukoutalia area, specifically from the villages of Wangui (3 km north of Tchoukoutalia), Leletoua (5 km west of Tchoukoutalia) and Kaguéréram (5 km north-west of Tchoukoutalia). Many more people are reportedly on their way. The reason for their displacement is the feeling of fear and insecurity following the attack on Wangui by elements of an armed group on 27 May. The displaced named the site Kengua. A rapid assessment is being prepared by several partners.

In parallel, return dynamics continue to be observed. A joint multisector assessment mission to five villages in Kangalom sub-prefecture was conducted from 7 to 9 June and analyzed the living conditions of 11,000 people who have returned to their villages of origin since January 2016, mostly women and children. These people, who had to leave their villages due to the evacuation of island areas in 2015 related to military operations, are facing severe vulnerabilities in the sectors of Water, Hygiene and Sanitation, as well as in Education. Other priority-needs include access to health care, the distribution of non-food items, and support to livelihoods. Returns were also reported in other villages that were not visited by the assessment team during the mission: Farguimi, Koumou, Kouradji, Doubaba, Dal, Nguiria, Ridjibo and Blarigui. A potential assistance to these people is being considered but would have to face many physical and security access constraints. Despite the military presence in the area, security incidents have been reported in the villages visited; again emphasizing the importance of ensuring security in return areas.

New partners are preparing interventions to meet multisector needs in the Lac region. The NGO INTERSOS announced the launch of its operations in the region with a 12-month project funded by the Italian cooperation in Tchoukoutalia, Fourkolom and Ngouboua, in Health, WASH and Food Security. Verification of the number of beneficiaries is ongoing. In addition, the NGO CARE is launching an integrated two-year emergency response project for 34,000 people (including refugees, IDPs, returnees and host populations) in Ngouboua and Liwa sub-prefectures, funded by GAC (Global Affairs Canada ). The project covers WASH, livelihoods and reproductive health. A consortium of three NGOs (OHD, ACHUDE and CHORA) is launching a project to support food security and household empowerment, targeting host and displaced populations in Baga Sola area (2,613 households in 18 villages) and Liwa (105 displaced households). The main areas of intervention are agricultural production, income-generating activities, support to the fisheries sector, support for the recovery of small ruminants, as well as occasional food assistance during the lean season. There is also a cross-cutting component of awareness-raising and training in water, hygiene, and sanitation. Finally, the NGO Concern Worldwide is starting activities in the Health and Nutrition sectors targeting 9,423 people in Tchoukoutalia.

On 22 June, the suspected case of hepatitis E identified on 24 May by the NGO MSF on Diamerom site was discharged from the hospital. The results of the samples sent to the laboratory are still awaited. In terms of prevention, the health cluster has strengthened epidemiological surveillance and staff training, and the WASH cluster has developed a response plan that includes water chlorination, training of community volunteers to increase awareness of good hygiene practices, and the construction of latrines. A suspected case of wild polio virus was also identified in May in the Lac region. Laboratory results remain pending before confirmation.

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