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Quarterly Mixed Migration Update West Africa, Quarter 4, 2020

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Key Updates

• Algeria expulsions to Niger: According to NGO Alarme Phone Sahara, at least 7,836 people were expelled from Algeria to Niger in a series of convoys, both official and unofficial, taking place over the course of the month of October and in mid-November. The UNHCR Special Envoy for the Western & Central Mediterranean qualified these collective expulsions as “contrary to international law.”

• Canary Islands arrivals: Some 15,900 refugees and migrants arrived to the Canary Islands by sea from October-December,1 a figure more than double the total for the rest of the year combined (approximately 6,135 arrivals from January-September), bringing the total arrivals for 2020 to an estimated 23,025.

• Côte d’Ivoire election displacement: Tensions, clashes and the fear of further violence surrounding the 31 October presidential elections in Côte d’Ivoire had caused some 24,277 Ivorians to seek refuge in neighboring countries as of the year’s end. The majority were being hosted in Liberia (23,075), of whom more than 60% are children and 25% are women.

• Burkina Faso IDPs: Numbers of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Burkina Faso, which had seen substantial increases in each previous quarter in 2020, plateaued in the fourth quarter. However, according to UNHCR the year saw the numbers of IDPs in Burkina Faso almost double, from 560,033 in December of 2019 to 1,074,933 as of 31 December 2020.