Cameroon got 12,000 Nigerian displaced people in 2023 – UNHCR

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UNHCR
UNHCR

Cameroon has received 12,000 Nigerian refugees in 2023, according to the United Nations refugee agency, the UNHCR.

Minawao camp, the only official refugee camp in the country’s Far North region, hosts about 70,000 Nigerians seeking shelter from violence in their homeland, the UNHCR said in a statement Thursday.

“Minawao refugee camp in the Far North is… experiencing a hidden emergency, as over 12,000 refugees and asylum-seekers have arrived at the Gourenguel Transit Center almost daily since January 2023, seeking protection and assistance from the nearby camp, which is itself nearing saturation,” the statement said.

The new arrivals could strain the capacity of the refugee camp, Olivier Beer, the UNHCR representative in Cameroon, told a press conference in the capital, Yaounde, calling for solutions, including speeding up repatriation of refugees willing to return home.

“There are about 14,000 refugees who want to return. Next year we will advocate to have a tripartite meeting between Nigeria, Cameroon and UNHCR to start thinking about the process of repatriation,” Beer said. Cameroon hosts 488,500 refugees and asylum-seekers mainly from the Central African Republic and Nigeria, according to the UNHCR.

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