More than 784,000 people are internally displaced northern Mozambique due to violence perpetrated by non-state armed groups (NSAGs). UNHCR reiterates its concern for the protection and humanitarian needs of displaced and host communities in Cabo Delgado and neighboring provinces.
UNHCR is also concerned with the volatile security situation in Cabo Delgado. UNHCR and partners are working closely with local authorities to ensure that the needs of both recently and previously displaced communities are addressed in northern Mozambique.
Despite some spontaneous returns within Cabo Delgado, UNHCR reiterates the importance of ensuring that returns are safe, voluntary, conducted with dignity and based on an informed decision, and that basic services are restored in areas of origin.
Results of returns intention surveys:
The Protection Cluster (PC) published the results of the returns intentions survey conducted in April in Maganja and Quitunda areas, Palma District. Out of 268 internally displaced households surveyed, 90 per cent were from Mocimboa da Praia. Of those interviewed, 92 percent expressed their willingness to return to their areas of origin. Overall, the main finding of the assessment is that families are willing to return not because of the perceived improvement of the security situation in their districts of origin, but as a consequence of the poor conditions and of frictions with host communities.
The return intentions survey conducted in March in Pulo Site, Metuge district, targeting 260 households mainly from Meluco District, indicated that only 18 per cent of those interviewed were willing to return - this reveals different dynamics within Cabo Delgado regarding potential returns, which reinforces the need to continue conducting similar exercises and to maintain an open channel of communication with the communities to record their intentions and needs.
The PC is working with partners to increase service provision in the areas assessed targeting both displaced and host communities; shared the survey’s findings and recommendations with local authorities and other clusters to ensure holistic approach in the provision of assistance; and is assessing and considering possible support to ensure effective service provision in areas of return.
UNHCR continues to stress the importance of ensuring that returns are safe, voluntary, conducted with dignity, based on an informed decision and only when basic services are restored in areas of origin.