UNHCR Niger Factsheet: Diffa Region, May 2021


+ 8,500 new arrivals in Sayam Forage Camp during the first quarter of 2021.

The Diffa region hosts 265,696* Nigerian refugees, internally displaced persons, and Nigerien returnees. More than 80% of them live in spontaneous settlements. (*Government figures)

Since April 2019, movements are restricted on many roads following attacks, kidnappings, and the increased use of explosive devices.

The security situation has a strong negative impact on the economy of the region, reducing opportunities for both host and displaced populations.

Persons of concern registered biometrically in UNHCR database. These include refugees, asylum seekers, returnees, and internally displaced persons
Households of 29,540 refugees and returnees registered in Sayam Forage Camp as of 30th April 2021.
Houses built in Diffa region as of 30th April 2021.

Operation Strategy

The key pillars of the UNHCR strategy for the Diffa region are:

  • Ensure institutional resilience through capacity development and support to the authorities (locally elected and administrative authorities) in the framework of the Niger decentralisation process.
  • Strengthen the out of camp policy around the urbanisation program through sustainable interventions and dynamic partnerships including with the World Bank. Ensure a coordinated and high-quality protection response and maintain an emergency response capacity

Update on Achievements
Operational Context

The Diffa region has been hosting Nigerian refugees fleeing terrorist violence in the northern states of Nigeria since 2013. In the wake of the first attacks on Niger Territory in 2015, the situation has dramatically deteriorated. In May 2015, the authorities decided to evacuate the population living in the Niger region of the Lake Chad Islands toward an internally displaced camp launched in Kablewa, however this latter has been closed in July 2017 following bombing attack in the camp and recurrent security situation.

Since April 2019, movements are restricted on the Gueskerou, Toumour and Bosso roads following the finding of explosive devices, consecutive attacks, and kidnappings.

In April 2021, the security situation continued to deteriorate in the Diffa region due to terrorist activism despite government efforts to stabilize the administrative and security situation, making the humanitarian access to certain areas difficult. The number of incidents recorded in April is among the highest of the year 2021.

Forced recruitments of civilians, looting of the army logistics stocks, kidnappings, cattle theft as well as the use of improvised explosive devices against the Defense and Security Forces were also reported.