Central African refugee situation: Democratic Republic of the Congo - May 2017

Report
from UN High Commissioner for Refugees
Published on 31 May 2017

Highlights

  • A new influx from Central African Republic was observed in Bas-Uele and Nord Ubangi provinces starting from mid-May. The influx was triggered by violence, tensions and fear about imminent attacks in border areas, namely in the city of Bangassou, Bema and Mobayi.

  • Local authorities, General Direction of Migration (DGM) and National Commission for Refugees (CNR) reported around 21,500 asylum seekers having crossed the border into DRC. These figures should be regarded as preliminary. Directly after reporting period (as of 2nd of June 2017), the estimated number of new arrival rose to 33,618, as additional new arrivals were reported by DGM in Nord-Ubangi Province.

  • People arrived without hardly any belongings and some were wounded and required treatment. Moreover, these areas are difficult to reach, namely in Bas-Uele province, and it has not yet been possible to provide relief items by road.

  • The influx in Bas-Uele province did not take place to the area affected by an Ebola outbreak, which was located further inland, about 100 km far away from the arrival areas. Hygiene sensitizations were carried out among refugees and asylum seekers, including the ones hosted in Mboti camp.

Operational Context

In the aftermath of the attack to the city of Bangassou in Central African Republic, fear of spillover and alleged movements of armed groups along the border pushed thousands of Central Africans to seek asylum in DRC.

The influx spread panic among local population living along the border in DRC who feared infiltration of armed elements.

Congolese army (FARDC) carried out a border monitoring mission starting from 17th May in South Ubangi province along Ubangi River in Libenge territory.