WFP sounds alarm as thousands flee Nigeria

Wednesday, February 11, 2015
[PHOTO: UNifeed] 
Diffa Region, Niger: Violence by armed groups in Northern Nigeria is causing large numbers of people to flee into neighbouring countries, straining already stretched communities and services in poor areas of Cameroon, Chad and Niger. 

The number of women and children among those fleeing is increasing. WFP is particularly deeply concerned about the nutritional state of newly arriving refugee children. 

WFP is on the ground in all three countries and is scaling up its response to the refugee influx - but insecurity makes it increasingly risky for humanitarian agencies to operate, especially in remote areas. 

WFP seeks to reach 238,000 people with food assistance over 12 months.

The cost of the regional emergency operation until the end of this year reaches over USD 50 millions.
People receiving assistance to include: refugees (Cameroon, Chad, Niger), returnees (Niger), and internally displaced persons (Cameroon) as well as very poor local people in the three countries whose access to food has been made worse by the crisis.

According to WFP, Niger has the highest number of refugees and returnees of the three countries. The second half of 2014 saw a major increase of new arrivals in Diffa region.

In October, only 15,000 people crossed the border. The total estimated number now stands at 125,000 people spread out over more than 140 sites and villages. -UNifeed
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