Burkina Faso

Burkina Faso: UNHCR Operational Update, 1 January - 28 February 2021

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According to the National Council for Emergency Relief and Rehabilitation (CONASUR), 1,121,960 individuals, including a majority of children and women have fled their homes seeking safety.

UNHCR and CONAREF facilitated the relocation of 1,211 refugees and asylum-seekers from the town of Djibo to Goudoubo refugee camp. These returns come in addition to the 5,250 refugees relocated last December from Dori.

On 10 February, a new government was formed and a new Ministry for national reconciliation, attached to the Presidency, was created.

OPERATIONAL CONTEXT

During the reporting period, the security situation remained volatile across the country. Attacks by armed groups against security forces and the kidnappings and killings of civilians and religious representatives continued. However, in February, the situation remained generally calm in the Boucle du Mouhoun and the East regions, despite the presence of armed groups. Crime continued to rise in Ouagadougou and other urban centres.

In this context, internal displacements continue, with the number of people fleeing their homes in search of safety reaching 1,121,960 by the end of February, including a majority of women (47%) and children (54%), according to the National Council for Emergency Relief and Rehabilitation (CONASUR). In early January, following several attacks by armed groups in and around the town of Koumbri in the North region, 11,400 individuals (both from Mossi and Fulanis communities) fled to Ouahigouya, where most were hosted by local communities. Following a rapid protection evaluation by government and humanitarian actors were provided with sensitization and awareness raising sessions on social cohesion and urgent assistance was provided for shelter, core relief items by UNHCR. In February, with the progressive improvement of the security situation, 6,000 individuals mostly Mossi, are estimated to have returned to their villages according to information gathered through the protection monitoring. The Government of Burkina Faso continues to generously host some 20,256 refugees and asylum seekers, mainly from Mali, as of 31 January 2021. The reporting period was marked by the second phase of returns to Goudoubo camp from the town of Djibo – some 200 kms away.

The start of the year was marked by the forming of a new government. The former Prime Minister was reappointed and a Ministry in charge of national reconciliation was created. This new Ministry, which comes in addition to the High Council for Reconciliation and National Unity, will strengthen efforts towards lasting peace through the promotion of social cohesion in Burkina Faso.