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Spotlight on Humanitarian Crisis in Lake Chad

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20th – 27th June 2016: This week, the medical charity Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) reported that 200 people had died over the last month in Bama IDP camp in Borno state, Nigeria. The charity expressed concerns about what was termed a disastrous humanitarian situation at the camp, which hosts 24,000 people, including 15,000 children. MSF said that they had examined 800 children in the camp, finding that one in five suffered from malnutrition. The charity had also found 1,233 open graves on the border of the camp, dug out throughout the past year. The NGO hoped that it would be able to gain better access to the camp, given that their urgent nutrition care facility only had 86 beds. Bama is in an isolated area, 80 km to the South-East of Maiduguri, on a road that leads to the frontier with Cameroon, an area that has long been occupied by Boko Haram militants.

According to the International Office of Migration, 3 million people in the Lake Chad region have been displaced by Boko Haram violence as of April 2016. Refugee and IDP camps have been set up in countries like Niger, Cameroon, Chad and Nigeria, but reports show a chronic shortage or resources. The situation is highly insecure, with militants raiding and attacking civilians residing in the camps and surrounding villages.
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