Ethnic cleansing beyond Malian borders: three deaths in Niger

Nigerien guards at the Tazalit United Nations refugee camp in the Tahoua region Nigerien guards at the Tazalit United Nations refugee camp in the Tahoua region Boureima Hama, AFP

01 June 2020                   

In Niger, at least three killings in the Intikane refugee camp, the UNHCR denounces the fact as heinous

Last Sunday afternoon, May 31, over 50 armed men have assaulted the Intikane refugee camp in the Tahoua region, which stands at 72 kilometres from the Malian borders. This area hosts both refugees from Mali and internationally displaced Nigerien citizens. During the assault, two Malian refugee leaders and a local community member have been killed.

The assailants have erupted in the refugee camp, ruining the main source of clean water, food supply, and destroying the main lines of communication. The necessity of water supply not only affects the survival of the people, but it is also crucial in the emergency of the COVID-19. However, those attacks are just one example of externalisation of the Malian conflict, that is spreading across the neighbouring countries and becoming a multistate ethnic cleansing.

The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has denounced the attack as heinous and is providing protection to the people fleeing violence. In addition, the UN agency is implementing educational programmes to prevent and address any kind of violence in the Sahel area, which has been afflicted by attacks of the Islamic extremist organisation of Boko Haram. The Nigerien government is cooperating with the UNHCR and it has committed to protecting refugees and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in its territories.


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Author: Carla Pintor


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