Côte d'Ivoire + 1 more

IDP News Alert, 8 April 2011

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Côte d'Ivoire: Precarious situations for thousands of IDPs in the West

Philippines: Up to 1,700 families displaced in the south by fighting between rebels and armed militias

Côte d'Ivoire: Precarious situations for thousands of IDPs in the West

Intense fighting in the western town of Duékoué at the end of March has led to the displacement of tens of thousands of people. At least some 800 people were killed in intercommunal violence at the advance of Alassane Ouattara's forces, while up to 25,000 IDPs have found refuge at the Catholic mission in Duékoué where they have no access to food, water and shelter. An undetermined number of Duékoué residents looked for safety close to the compound of the UN Operation in Cote d'Ivoire, while others were stranded on the road to Guiglo. To identify those most in need of immediate humanitarian assistance, IOM, UNHCR, WFP and Caritas are carrying out a registration exercise at the Catholic mission in Duékoué. The International Criminal Court may initiate an investigation into the alleged mass killings in the West. Meanwhile, aid groups have been calling on both parties to the conflict to let them access those in need, especially in Abidjan. Direct attacks on aid workers were reported in some neighbourhoods of Côte d'Ivoire's economic capital, where the situation remains critical. The price of basic food staples has tripled and water has been cut in most parts of the city.

Philippines: Up to 1,700 families displaced in the south by fighting between rebels and armed militias According to local officials, 14 people died and up to 1,733 families in Maguindanao province were displaced on 3 April by a clash between rebels of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and armed militias linked to an influential local family. The displaced, originating from the municipalities of Mangudadatu, Buluan and Pandag, sought refuge in up to a dozen different safer locations, sheltering mainly in public schools turned into Evacuation Centers. An estimated 200 families received assistance from the Department of Social Welfare and Development which provided them with food as well as used clothes. A military spokesman said that the intervention of the security forces prevented fighting from escalating further and aimed primarily at securing the protection and return of IDPs to their homes. The military presented the dispute as a case of "rido", or clan feud, triggered by a road construction. The MILF, for its part, argued that they intervened to protect Moro communities from a "development aggression". They accused the Mangudadatu family of planning to convert land in the area into palm oil plantations, which would result in the eviction of local communities from their land.