Niger + 1 more

UNHCR Niger Factsheet: Maradi, June 2021

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+ 57,000 Nigerian refugees biometrically registered in Maradi region.

Non-state armed groups killings, looting and kidnapping in Nigeria’s North-Western States have forced 80,000 people to flee in Maradi region, Niger, over the past two years.

In September 2019, UNHCR opened a sub-office in Maradi to coordinate, assistance provision, including registration, protection, health, housing, access to WASH services and education.

The key UNHCR’s response is the relocation of refugees in villages of opportunity, away from the border, to ensure their safety. 17,041 refugees have been relocated so far.

Operational context

For more than two years, non-state armed groups (NSAG) activism has forced 80,000 Nigerians to flee to Maradi region in Niger. In addition, repeated intrusions of armed bandits, on Nigerien Territory have triggered the internal displacement of some 26,000 people. organized attacks in Niger villages, bordering the states of Zamfara, Sokoto, and Katsina in north western Nigeria characterize the security context in Maradi region. Armed criminal gangs operate regularly on both sides of the border mainly targeting farmers and breeders and kidnapping for ransom. Security measures have been strengthened along the border with the deployment since January 2021 of the military operation 'farota bouchi' in the departments of Guidan Roumdji and Madaroumfa in the southwest of the region. The attacks on villages are always accompanied by widespread pillage of large-scale livestock. Some people are killed or abducted for ransom payment. Most of the time, communities raised concerns about the slow or lack of response by defense forces to attacks on their communities, even when alerted to attacks ahead of time.

Since the beginning of the 2021, protection monitoring teams have documented 383 protection incidents, with an average of 54 incidents per month. However, since the deployment of defense and security forces in the departments of Guidan Roumdji and Madaroumfa, the number of incidents has decreased. Hence a 44% drop in incidents was noted between the first quarter during which 203 incidents were documented compared to the second quarter where 141 incidents were documented. Movements of population are regular reported either from Nigeria or internally displacement

Operational strategy

While continuing the community-based protection, UNHCR response in Maradi focuses on the relocation of refugees away from the border to ensure their security and ease the pressure on host communities. Refugee sites have been built nearby rural villages. Services such as water adduction, health and education are provided to both refugees and host communities. Towards the nexus, different activities are developed for enhancing the resilience capacity of the beneficiaries