News / Africa

UNHCR Says More Refugees Fleeing Ivory Coast

Ivorian refugees at makeshift camp in Bossou village, Guinea
Ivorian refugees at makeshift camp in Bossou village, Guinea

The United Nations refugee agency reports the number of people fleeing Ivory Coast continues to rise. It says more than 4,200 Ivorians now have fled fearing an eruption of civil war in the wake of the disputed elections in their country.

The UNHCR says some 200 Ivorian refugees have gone to Guinea. So far, there has been no refugee movement toward Burkina Faso, Ghana and Mali, according to the agency.

But, this could quickly change.  UNHCR says it is prepared and has supplies ready in all five countries should there be a mass movement of people from Ivory Coast.

Spokeswoman, Melissa Fleming says she expects refugee numbers to reach at least 5,000 by early next week.  Fleming says the number of Ivorians needing assistance now is large and could potentially become much larger.

"It is very difficult to predict violence or to predict the outcome of this dispute.  It could very well result in fighting that would cause people to flee.  And, all I can say is that we are prepared," Fleming said.  "But, I would not want to speculate about  what is going to happen.  We do notice that the people who have come over-it is kind of pre-emptive fear of what is going to happen and not necessarily because they have been directly threatened.  Because the tension in the country is making them very nervous." 

Slideshow of Ivorian Refugees in Guinea



The International community considers Alassane Ouattara to have won last month's disputed Presidential election.  His opponent, the previous President, Laurent Gbagbo rejects international calls for him to step down.

Both men claim victory and have set up competing presidential administrations.  The current standoff took a violent turn on Thursday when Oattara supporters clashed with troops loyal to Gbagbo.  At least 20 people were killed according to a spokeswoman for Gbagbo, while supporters of Ouattara say the death toll is at least 30.  

The UNHCR reports most of the Ivorians who have arrived in Liberia are women and children.  It says local communities are generously sharing their modest homes and limited resources with them.

The agency says the refugees urgently need food, clean water, sanitation facilities, clothing, and basic hygiene items.

You May Like

Obama: I Will Do 'Everything I Can' to Close Guantanamo

US president says prison continues 'to inspire jihadists and extremists around the world' More

Sierra Leone Educates on Safe Ebola Burials

Also, country is improving at rapid response to isolated outbreaks, but health workers need to be even faster, officials say More

Christmas Gains Popularity in Vietnam

Increasingly wealthy Vietnamese embrace holiday due to its non-religious glamor, commercial appeal More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubansi
X
Sharon Behn
December 19, 2014 9:34 PM
For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubans

For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video Three Cities Bid for Future Obama Presidential Library

President Barack Obama still has two years left in his term in office, but the effort to establish his post-presidential library is already underway. The bid for the Obama Presidential Library is down to four locations in three states -- New York, Hawaii, and Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, each of them played an important part in the president’s life before he reached the White House.
Video

Video Cuba Deal is Major Victory for Pope’s Diplomatic Initiatives

Pope Francis played a key role in brokering the US-Cuba deal that was made public earlier this week. It is the most stunning success so far in a series of peacemaking efforts by the pontiff. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Fears of More Political Gridlock in 2015

2014 proved to be a difficult year politically for President Barack Obama and a very good year for the U.S. Republican Party. Republican gains in the November midterm elections gave them control of the Senate and House of Representatives for the next two years -- setting the stage for more confrontation and gridlock in the final two years of the Obama presidency. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.

All About America

AppleAndroid