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Protection in Danger Monthly News Brief - December 2020

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Africa

Democratic Republic of the Congo

31 December 2020: In Bijombo village, Mwenga territory, South Kivu province, a group of 50 IDP women who were farming were attacked by militiamen of the Ngumino and Twiganeho coalition led by Michel Rukundo Makanika. Four women and two children were killed with machetes, one girl was seriously injured and at least three women went missing. Sources: Radio Okapi, Actualité and ACLED1

Ethiopia

As reported on 08 December 2020: In Tigray region, the instability caused by the conflict between the Ethiopian Federal Government and the TPLF has continued to prevent the UNHCR from reaching some 96,000 Eritrean refugees. Source: New Age

As reported on 11 December 2020: In Tigray region, according to reports received by the UNHCR, unidentified perpetrators have been killing or abducting and forcibly returning Eritrean refugees to Eritrea.
Source: New Age

Niger

13 December 2020: In Tumuk town, Diffa region and department 50 Nigerian refugees are feared killed after an attack by Boko Haram militants who also burned down residents’ houses. Source: Sahara Reporters

South Sudan

23 November 2020: In Cueibet town and county, Lakes state, hundreds of IDPs have fled the town following inter-communal clashes. The IDPs are camped in Marial-Atem and are living without the provision of shelter, food, water or humanitarian assistance. Source: Eye Radio

04 December 2020: In Mongalla IDP camp, Mongalla county, Central Equatoria state, a 13-year-old boy was killed and a 12-year-old IDP abducted by unidentified armed men. Another man was shot and killed whilst burning charcoal on Sunday. The camp chairperson has called on the government to increase security in the area. Source: Eye Radio

Sudan

21 December 2020: Near Gallab IDP camp, North Darfur state, one man and nine women, one of whom was pregnant, were attacked by armed shepherds while on their way to fetch straw. Source: Radio Dabanga

Asia

Bangladesh

As reported on 07 December 2020: In Ukhia and Teknaf upazilas, Cox’s Bazar district, Chittagong division, the Bangladeshi Government has transferred some 1,600 Rohingyas from refugee camps to the remote island of Bhashan Char, reportedly without refugees’ consent in some cases. The UNHCR has been denied access to Bhasan Char for months, having requested to perform a technical and protection assessment of the island prior to refugee relocation to ensure a minimum level of habitability.
Sources: al Jazeera, RFA I, RFA II, RFA III and UN News

28 December 2020: In Cox’s Bazar district, Chittagong division, the Bangladeshi Government transferred an additional 1,772 Rohingyas from refugee camps to Chittagong city, en route to the remote island of Bhashan Char. Some Rohingyas said they are going willingly, whilst human rights activists have expressed doubts about these transfers due to allegations that some Rohingya had their homes in the camps padlocked, forcing them to relocate to the island. Sources: France 24 and RFA

28 December 2020: In Cox’s Bazar district, Chittagong division, some residents at the Kutupalong Refugee Camp seized a Rohingya photographer as he took pictures of his sister who had boarded a bus leaving for the remote island of Bhashan Char. The victim was handed over to the camp administrator before reportedly being beaten and detained. As of December 31, the victim was still in jail. Source: RFA

China

As reported on 30 December 2020: Update: The Chinese Government has continued to hold five North Korean asylum seekers in custody since September 13, prompting the UN’s Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, the Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human RIghts in North Korea, and the Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment or Punishment to appeal against their repatriation. Source: RFA