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Conflicts uproot 10.7 million people in Great Lakes region

Staff Writer | November 14, 2017
Conflicts have displaced some 10.7 million people in the Great Lakes region by the end of September, the UN humanitarian agency said in a report.
Great Lakes region
Africa   OCHA Regional Office
The UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) Regional Office for Southern and Eastern Africa said the number, including 6.6 million international displaced persons (IDPs) across the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), South Sudan, Central Africa Republic (CAR), and Burundi, is expected to increase in the months ahead.

In its humanitarian outlook for the Great Lakes region, OCHA said the figure also included 3.5 million refugees and asylum seekers from these countries seeking protection in the wider region, including 2.1 million hosted in the Great Lakes region; and a further 600,000 from other regions currently hosted in the Great Lakes.

"Significant protection concerns are expected to continue to be reported across the region, including targeted attacks against civilians and gender-based violence in CAR, DRC and South Sudan," said OCHA.

According to OCHA, conflicts are likely to remain the dominant driver of protracted humanitarian crises in the CAR, DRC and South Sudan, with increasing regional implications.

It said the proliferation of non-state armed actors across conflict-affected countries in the Great Lakes region has led to a geographical expansion of conflict areas within each of these countries and concern regarding the spread of conflicts and armed actors across state borders.

According to the report, DRC hosts the largest population of IDPs in Africa (3.9 million) and Uganda the largest number of refugees in Africa.