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CARE calls for respect for the obligation to protect civilian populations in Niger

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Niamey, Niger [January 5, 2021]- As a humanitarian and development organization working in Niger, CARE International is deeply concerned about the ongoing crisis in the Tillabéry region and its impact on the civilian populations, mostly women and children.

As a reminder, on January 2, 2021, the Tillabéry region, on the border with Burkina Faso and Mali, suffered an attack by armed groups in the villages of Zaroumadareye and Tchoma Bangou causing the death of a hundred people and dozens of injured.

CARE urges respect for international humanitarian law and human rights, including the protection of civilians, by all parties to the conflict. Every civilian death is a tragedy and we urge all parties to the conflict to respect their obligation to protect civilian populations, already severely affected by the conflict, the effects of climate change and the secondary impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, in a region where the humanitarian response is underfunded. On the other hand, we are very concerned about the risks of gender-based violence (GBV ) to which women and girls are exposed in times of crisis and conflict.

"We recognize the efforts of the Nigerien government as well as of partners, in particular, the United Nations and NGOs, for the provision of essential services (food, water, health services, psychosocial care) to the affected populations. Nevertheless, we ask the government to strengthen security in conflict zones and more particularly in the Tillabéry region in order to protect the civilian populations against such attacks.

We extend our sincere condolences to the Government and people of Niger and wish a quick recovery to those injured," Ely KEITA, Country Director, CARE International in Niger.

Media contact:

EKADE Abali, Advocacy and inclusive Governance Technical Advisor, CARE Niger

Rakietou Hassane Mossi, Regional Communication and Support Officer, West Africa,

Mahamoudou Guimbayara, Regional Humanitarian Advocacy Advisor, West Africa,