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UNHCR Weekly Emergency Update #20 - Ituri and North Kivu Provinces, Democratic Republic of the Congo - 12 - 18 November 2019

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Operational context and protection situation

Ituri Province The security and protection environment in Ituri deteriorated during the reporting week, due to increased armed group activity, especially in Djugu and Irumu territories. UNHCR’s Protection Monitoring recorded 165 human rights violations in Ituri, compared to 111 incidents last week, an increase of 54 incidents (48.6%). Civilians endured killings, lootings and injuries committed by elements of the national army, presumed elements of armed groups, and unidentified armed men. Displaced people living in spontaneous sites are especially exposed to human rights violations.
Cases of rape committed against minors remain of concern. 589 households are estimated to have become recently displaced due to ongoing violence in Mahagi and Djugu territories. In addition, 62 huts burned down this week in a natural fire in a spontaneous IDP site in Djugu. In Mambasa Territory, unidentified assailants continued to disrupt the Ebola response; an Ebola screening point and handwashing devices were set on fire, and a humanitarian worker was assaulted in his home.

BACKGROUND: Since 6 June, generalized violence has led to massive new displacements in Ituri Province. UNHCR and IOM recorded over 110,000 new arrivals in IDP sites in Djugu, Mahagi and Irumu territories between 31 May and 20 June. OCHA estimated that 360,000 people were displaced by the recent crisis; some 145,000 towards IDP sites and the rest to host communities. As displacements have continued, Ituri’s Site Management and Coordination Working Group (CCCM) now estimates that almost 227,000 people are staying in 72 IDP sites. Outside of Bunia, the largest concentrations of IDPs are found in Drodro, Rho, Fataki, Kasenyi, Tchomia and Ramogi, in Djugu, Irumu and Mahagi territories. An estimated 1,575 people who had fled to Uganda were observed as having returned, but UNHCR is not able to establish exact numbers. UNHCR’s Protection Monitoring system documented 5,530 incidents between January and October 2019 in Ituri Province.