African Press International (API)

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Chadians Continue to Flee CAR, Often Destitute: IOM

Posted by African Press International on April 14, 2014

GENEVA, Switzerland, April 11, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ Since late December 2013 IOM has registered and tracked over 95,000 often destitute Chadian returnees, Central African nationals and other Third Country Nationals (TCNs) arriving in Chad from the Central African Republic (CAR).

At least 10,000 Chadians and other TCNs, including Malians and Sudanese, have fled to Cameroon. IOM organized road convoys from the CAR-Cameroon border to Moundou in Chad on 30th March and April 2nd. These convoys facilitated the return home of 1,219 stranded migrants.

IOM has now helped some 4,900 stranded migrants to leave Cameroon by road and by air and is continuing to monitor developments on the Cameroon-CAR border, as well as the Chad-CAR border, to help stranded migrants.

Mohamed was among the Chadians who returned to Chad with an IOM road convoy from Kentzou on the Cameroon-CAR border.

He fled his home in the mixed quarter of Miskine in the CAR capital Bangui after his brother and nephew were brutally murdered by anti-balaka militia.

Initially he found sanctuary in Bangui’s Central Mosque and eventually managed to reach Cameroon, where he was stranded at the border for over a month, without shelter and with little food or water.

With IOM’s help, Mohamed reached Chad’s Moundou transit site and continued to Sarh, where he was reunited with family members sheltering at the Doyaba transit site.

But the family was separated during the journey, and Mohamed believes that his wife and two children, who left Kentzou after him, are still stranded at the border. He is now receiving medication for traumatic stress caused by his experiences.

As people continue to flee CAR, the limited resources of neighbouring countries are being placed under massive strain. The withdrawal of the Chadian troops from CAR could also result in new waves of arrivals in both Chad and Cameroon, according to IOM Chad Chief of Mission Dr. Qasim Sufi.

With approximately 96.5 per cent of migrants, refugees and other TCNs fleeing the CAR arriving in Chad and Cameroon, the CAR crisis has become a Chadian and Cameroonian challenge from a humanitarian, security and financial perspective, he notes.

“We expect people to keep coming in the coming weeks and months, unless the level of violence in CAR decreases. This means that we will need to continue to provide transport and other assistance to these people, most of whom are destitute, vulnerable and traumatized,” he adds.

IOM is appealing for USD 28 million for Chad, USD 30 million for CAR and USD 7 million for Cameroon.


International Office of Migration (IOM)

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