- 1.5 million IDPs
- 820,825 REFUGEES AND ASYLUMSEEKERS
- 684,038 RETURNEES (REFUGEES AND IDPs)
- 106,555 OTHERS OF CONCERN
- $185.7 million NEEDED IN REVISED FINANCIAL REQUIREMENTS
To respond to the deepening crisis, UNHCR requires $185.7 million to provide lifesaving protection and assistance to refugees, IDPs, returnees and host communities the Sahel region. This includes the $96.7 million in initial requirements for 2020, $29.3 million to implement COVID-19 prevention and response measures in displacement areas, and an additional $59.7 million to scale up its emergency response, focusing on shelter and core relief items, prevention of and response to sexual and genderbased violence, education and the environment.
The central Sahel region—Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger—is facing a severe humanitarian and protection crisis.
Massive displacement, most of it driven by intense and largely indiscriminate violence perpetrated by a range of armed actors against civilian populations, is taking place across the region. While internal displacement is on the rise substantial numbers of refugees have fled to neighboring countries, and the situation risks spilling over into the coastal countries of Benin, Côte d'Ivoire, Ghana, and Togo.
Local communities have demonstrated remarkable generosity but are at a breaking point. National capacities are overwhelmed, and international support has been disproportionately dedicated to security assistance, with limited resources being made available for urgently needed humanitarian and development activities.
This context is exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, which is already affecting areas hosting refugees and IDPs. Despite a low number of tests and cases detected so far, the steady increase of infection rates indicates a forthcoming emergency that far exceeds the capacity of national health sectors. The immediate socio-economic impact will have longerterm consequences for food security and access to services and livelihoods throughout the Sahel region, disproportionately impacting displaced populations and jeopardizing durable solutions.
Coupled with the just starting lean season, which is predicted to be one of the most serious in decades, this situation will likely generate further large-scale displacement of populations within the region and beyond: possibly southward to coastal countries, as well as northward to North Africa and Europe.