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Mali: DRC responds to emergency crisis in North of Mali

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Source: Danish Refugee Council
Country: Burkina Faso, Mali

Since February 2013, The Danish Refugee Council (DRC) has deployed its emergency teams to assist the Malian population affected by the conflict.

According to UNHCR, the crisis in Mali has left 176,986 refugees seeking for protection in neighboring countries. Inside Mali, 301,027 IDPs have left their home to flee the conflict attacking the northern part of the country. 49,945 refugees arrived in Burkina Faso and are surviving in host families and camps organized to this purpose.

“As the humanitarian space and access are gradually opening in the North of Mali, the needs won’t cease to grow,” DRC Country Director in Mali, Dominique Koffy says.

Humanitarian assistance and protection monitoring including border monitoring with Burkina Faso have been the main activities for DRC in this mission. DRC has concentrated the resources in the North East of Mali in the regions of Mopti, Gao and Tombouctu and in the Northern regions of Burkina Faso.

Following an exploratory mission in late December 2012, DRC has managed to open the Mali and Burkina Faso Missions with DANIDA funding. The presence of protection teams in these volatile bordering areas has allowed to gradually gathering relevant information on protection risks in order to elaborate adequate responses for relevant actors, local authorities, UN and other humanitarian actors.

“In just two months of presence in Mali, DRC has assured the co-lead for the protection cluster in order to support the accountability of the cluster management and diversifying the expertise brought by the civil society. DRC is also the lead agency for the protection monitoring working group,” says Dominique Koffy.

DRC has intervened in areas where the humanitarian assistance is barely non-existent and where - thanks to its experience in the region on protection monitoring - relief is distributed following on vulnerability assessments. To date, almost 3000 people have participate in different DRC activities.

"During our mission in the North of Mali we met a man who has lost his speech as his wife was kidnapped, raped by an armed group, and then finally returned to his house. Probably many cases like this one are unknown and not taken care as we are not present and adequate care is very rare," says regional protection manager, Alberta Santini.

DRC will keep on reinforcing its integrated protection and assistance activities and expanding its geographical scope in the net coming months in order to assist the most affected populations in the endeavor to find concrete durable solution.


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