The Lake Chad Basin humanitarian emergency is among the most severe in the world. The protracted conflict has uprooted around 2.4 million people, stoked high levels of hunger and malnutrition, and subjected millions of civilians to extreme hardship. Insecurity is hampering the resumption of normal life, leaving conflict-affected families dependent on humanitarian assistance for survival.
The recent months have been marked by armed attacks persisting across the region. Civilians, including the displaced, towns and villages frequently come under attack. On 26 April, the military repulsed a major assault of an armed group on Maiduguri. On 19 March, the UN and partners resumed operations in Rann town in Borno state that were suspended following the 1 March attack in which three aid workers were killed. Around Lake Chad and on its islands, the Joint Multinational Task Force (MNJTF) has launched new operations against armed groups, potentially leading to population displacement and reduced humanitarian access.
Food insecurity is projected to worsen in the coming months, according to the March ‘Cadre Harmonisé’ assessment. Currently, around 4 million people are food insecure across the conflict-affected regions. The figure is set to increase to almost 5 million at the height of the lean season between June and August. In Diffa north-east Nigeria, humanitarian assistance and improved harvests have improved food availability, but needs remain high.
On 20 April, UNHCR appealed on Cameroonian authorities to ensure protection to those fleeing insecu1r%ity and pe4r%secution a3n%d refrain4f%rom forced returns. Despite the agreement on voluntary repatriation of Nigerian refugees in Cameroon, at least 385 Nigerians have been forcibly returned from Cameroon’s Far North region since the start of 2018.