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Chad: 8,500 arrive from Central African Republic

Briefing notes

Chad: 8,500 arrive from Central African Republic

17 June 2005

More than 8,500 refugees have arrived in southern Chad from the neighbouring Central African Republic (CAR) since the beginning of the month saying they fled an upsurge in violence after clashes between government forces and unidentified armed groups in early June. The new arrivals, the majority of whom are women and children, come from the Ouham region of northern CAR.

In Chad, the refugees are staying in makeshift shelters in villages around the town of Yambodo, near the border with CAR. Some of them are sheltering with local people who are themselves living in very precarious conditions. Food is scarce for everyone following a crop failure last season due to drought.

As an emergency measure, UNHCR has sent high-protein biscuits, plastic sheeting, blankets and cooking sets to meet the immediate needs of the newcomers. A UN inter-agency mission with representatives of WFP, UNICEF and UNHCR has gone to the area to assess the needs of the group and how they can best be helped in coordination with the local authorities. There are already 30,000 refugees from CAR in southern Chad - the majority arrived in 2003 after a military coup that brought President François Bozizé to power. The refugees are staying in the camps of Amboko in Goré and Yaroungou in Danamadji. Chad is also home to more than 210,000 Sudanese refugees from the Darfur region of Sudan. UNHCR has 12 camps in eastern Chad for Darfur refugees.