Niger: Diffa Situation Report No. 11 (as of 10 February 2015)

Highlights

  • Since 6 February, many people have fled parts of Niger’s southeastern border region, Diffa, following the fresh attacks perpetrated by Nigerian armed groups and the conflict between these groups and military troops from Niger. The number of displaced persons is yet to be verified.

  • In light of the security development, the Government of Niger declared a state of emergency in Diffa on 10 February.

  • More than 100,000 people displaced (both refugees and Nigerien returnees) from Nigeria have been registered in Diffa, according to Government’s preliminary data issued on 3 February.

  • The Government of Niger has sent 800 metric tons of food and a significant amount of non-food items (NFI) for displaced people from Nigeria and host communities as part of its emergency response for Diffa.

  • A total of 704 Nigerian people have been relocated to Sayam Forage refugee camp in Diffa.

  • A total of four cholera cases have been registered in Diffa in January 2015.

  • A delegation representing the National Assembly of Niger undertook an assessment mission to Diffa to assess the living conditions of people affected by the crisis in Nigeria.

Situation Overview

Since 6 February, fighting between armed groups from Nigeria and military troops from Niger as well as attacks perpetrated by armed groups have been underway in Diffa. This has made the humanitarian situation more concerning. Internal displacements of people have been noticed since the beginning of the attacks and fighting. However, there are no figures of displaced people available yet. The necessity of protecting the humanitarian space in Diffa is crucial to prevent any impediments to humanitarian operations, which can aggravate the situation of vulnerable populations.

Since the launch of an operation to relocate refugees on 30 December 2014, 704 people have been relocated to the Sayam Forage refugee camp as of 23 January. The camp can host 5,000 people with a potential to increase its capacity. A second camp in Kablewa, also in Diffa, was completed in February. The ongoing census conducted by the Nigerien National Commission for Refugees, supported by UNHCR, has registered 10,916 Nigerian refugees as of 22 January.

In January, about 800 Nigerians were voluntary repatriated to Nigeria from Gagamari site following an initiative of the Governor of Borno state. In light of the prevailing security situation in Borno state, HCR raised concerns regarding this type of operation and requested its suspension.

On 13 January, Nigerien authorities launched an emergency aid programme for the displaced population as well as the host population in Diffa. The first batch of aid to Diffa included the following relief items: 800 tons of cereals, 1,880 blankets, 2,200 mosquito nets, 3,000 mattresses, 1,020 buckets and 1,000 cooking pots.

Following Prime Minister Brigi Rafini’s mission to Diffa on 10 December 2014 that led to the Government appeal for national and international solidarity, another high-level mission composed of members of the parliament carried out a mission to the region in January. The mission visited some displaced people at Gagamari and Garin Dogo to better understand their living conditions and those of the host population. The delegation provided an aid of 25 million CFA francs (about US$ 44,000) to the regional authorities to support vulnerable people.

On the health front, four new cholera cases were recorded in Zarwaran (municipality of Chetimari) on 24 January.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs:
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