Conflict, displacement, food insecurity, malnutrition, recurrent disease epidemics and outbreaks, cyclical floods and droughts in Niger have put more than 3.8 million people, including 2.1 million children, in need of humanitarian assistance, a 30 percent increase compared to 2020.
Insecurity is spreading at a rapid pace in Niger. Attacks along the borders with Burkina Faso, Mali and Nigeria have led to significant displacements in the country and continue to wreak havoc on the lives of hundreds of thousands of children.
"Children’s lives have been torn apart. It is hard to believe that children should live in permanent fear of such attacks. This doesn’t have to be their reality" UNICEF Regional Director for West and Central Africa, Marie-Pierre Poirier. warned. "The protection of children’s rights, including children in displacement, is fundamental, be it the right to food, health, education, water or the right to be protected from violence. They need shelter, food, drinking water, medical care and education".
Attacks in the Lake Chad region have prevented nearly 269,000 people in Diffa (eastern Niger) from returning home. More than 195,000 people are now displaced in the regions of Tillabery and Tahoua, in western Niger. Over 77,000 people who have fled inter-communal violence in northern Nigeria are currently living in Maradi region (central Niger), together with more than 21,000 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs). As of the end of March 2021, Niger hosted a total of 313,000 IDPs, 235,000 refugees and 36,000 returnees. The number of schools forced to close due to insecurity in conflict-affected areas has increased from 312 to 377 over recent months in Niger.