Niger has become a major hub for mixed movements northwards to Libya, Algeria and the Mediterranean while witnessing an increasing number of people fleeing Libya or being refouled from Algeria on Nigerien territory.
UNHCR Niger operation has opened a new office in Agadez in 2017, scaling up its operational capacity to give a response to those in need of international protection within mixed migratory flows.
In response to the complex humanitarian and security situation in Libya, Niger is increasingly turning into an alternative space for protection, including for the asylum-seekers and refugees who fail to reach Europe.
Niger is situated in a geopolitically sensitive area linking the Sahara Desert with the Sahel, and West with Central Africa. The country has become a major hub for mixed movements northwards to Libya, Algeria and the Mediterranean while at the same time witnessing an increasing number of people fleeing Libya or being deported from Algeria on Nigerien territory.
UNHCR’s main objective is to ensure that people in need of international protection have access to protection, receive assistance and have access to asylum. Therefore, UNHCR Niger invests in the structural strengthening of the Nigerien asylum system and implements all the needed activities to support and assist beneficiaries in the region. Moreover, UNHCR gives assistance to people under its mandate and aims to find durable solutions, such as resettlement, local integration, or voluntary return to the country of origin if the security conditions allow. Complementary legal pathways, such as family reunification, study visa or humanitarian evacuations are also examined.
As of 30 July 2021; UNHRC and its partners has identified and biometrically registered 1,431 individuals in need of international protection. 89% of the population under UNHCR mandate in Agadez are Sudanese nationals. 45% of the entire population have a refugee status obtained in Niger or elsewhere while 55% are asylum seekers; 64% are men, 9% are women and 27% are children under the age of eighteen.
The most vulnerable are currently hosted in 6 guesthouses in Agadez when they receive protection response and assistance while the other are hosted in the Humanitarian Center built in the outskirt of the city.
UNHCR and its partners provide meals, water, sanitation, health, education and all services for each refugee and asylum seeker living in the guesthouses, the Humanitarian Center, and the most vulnerable living in the host community.