Crisis Deepens in Mozambique:
UNHCR Reports Over 850,000 Displaced Amidst Conflict and Climate Catastrophes
October 26, 2023
In a concerning update from Mozambique, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has released a situation report highlighting the ongoing crisis that continues to ravage the country. The report, published on October 25, 2023, paints a grim picture of the situation faced by approximately 25,000 refugees and asylum-seekers, and an overwhelming 850,599 people internally displaced due to a mix of escalating violence by non-state armed groups and the devastating impacts of climate change.
Mozambique, listed among the nations most adversely affected by climate change, witnessed the brutal landfall of Tropical Cyclone Freddy in February and March 2023. This catastrophic event, occurring just a year after Tropical Cyclone Gombe, affected over one million people, demolished critical infrastructure, and resulted in the displacement of about 184,000 individuals.
The UNHCR, in collaboration with various partners, is diligently working with stakeholders, including the Mozambican Government, to provide essential protection services and assistance to refugees, asylum-seekers, internally displaced persons (IDPs), IDP returnees, as well as host communities. These efforts also aim to foster resilience in communities and facilitate sustainable solutions to displacement. In recent months, about 571,468 people have returned to their original homes, only to find poor living conditions and a lack of essential services.
Stressing the importance of voluntary and dignified returns, the UNHCR also advocates for the inclusion of refugees and IDPs in national services, data systems, and climate-related contingency planning and response strategies. In a notable move, the UNHCR is escalating its engagement with development and peace-building entities to support the integration of displaced and returned populations by broadening the scope of their programs.
Key figures in the report indicate a dire need for assistance and protection:
2 million people in critical need of assistance and protection
850,599 Internally Displaced Persons
668,939 (79%) IDPs in northern Mozambique due to ongoing conflict
181,660 (21%) climate-related IDPs following extreme weather events
45% of IDPs residing in relocation sites, 55% in host communities
51% of IDPs are women and children
571,468 returnees, many living in IDP-like conditions
Approximately 25,000 refugees and asylum seekers
The situation in Mozambique remains a matter of urgent concern, highlighting the need for increased international attention and aid. The country continues to grapple with the dual challenges of conflict and climate-induced disasters, putting thousands of lives at risk and demanding immediate and effective responses from the global community.
For more updates and detailed information, please visit the ReliefWeb website.
Source: UNHCR Mozambique: Operational Update September 2023 - Mozambique | ReliefWeb. (2023, October 25). Reliefweb.int. https://reliefweb.int/report/mozambique/unhcr-mozambique-operational-update-september-2023