Internal Displacement Update
Issue 18: 18 - 31 May

Issue 18 map
Feature

Philippines

Affected areas

Mindanao island group (Lanao del Norte, Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao, Misamis Oriental provinces)

Cause of displacement

Disaster, Conflict

Figures

As many as 182,000 new disaster displacements between 5 and 26 May; At least 100,000 new conflict displacements between 23 and 31 May

Context

As many as 182,000 people were displaced between 5 and 26 May in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), following flooding in the municipalities of Datu Salibo, Shariff Saidona Mustapha and Sultan Matura in Maguindanao province on 5 May. The displaced people sought refuge with relatives and friends (DROMIC, 26 May 2017).

More than 100,000 people were displaced between 23 and 31 May due to violent clashes between government armed forces and Maute insurgents in Marawi city in Lanao del Sur province, ARMM (DROMIC, 31 May 2017). Almost 50 per cent of the total population of Marawi was displaced (ECHO, 29 May 2017; Al Jazeera, 31 May 2017). As many as 14,000 residents moved to 24 evacuation centres set up in fisheries, schools and gymnasiums in Lanao del Sur and Lanao del Norte provinces; others sought refuge with relatives or friends, some leaving the province for Lanao del Norte and Misamis Oriental (DROMIC, 31 May 2017).

Confrontations in Marawi city involved government troops firing against Maute fighters who had seized large parts of the city, torched government buildings and a church, and flew black flags indicating their allegiance with Islamic State in Iraq and Levant (ISIL). In response, President Duterte declared martial law across Mindanao island group, home to 20 million people, which will allow government forces to carry out searches and arrests and detain suspects without warrants (The Sydney Morning Herald, 25 May 2017; Al Jazeera, 24 May 2017).

East Asia and Pacific

Indonesia

Affected areas

Central Kalimantan, North Kalimantan and North Sumatra

Cause of displacement

Disaster

Figures

As many as 7,000 new displacements between 22 and 27 May

Context

As many as 7,000 people were temporarily evacuated following floods in the West Kotawaringin district of Central Kalimantan, the Bulungan and Nunukan districts of North Kalimantan, and Langkat district of North Sumatra between 22 and 27 May (OCHA, 29 May 2017).

Latin America and the Caribbean

Brazil

Affected areas

Alagoas and Pernambuco states

Cause of displacement

Disaster

Figures

As many as 58,000 new displacements between 26 and 30 May

Context

As many as 45,000 people were evacuated in 23 cities across Pernambuco state between 26 and 29 May following heavy rains and flooding (G1, 29 May 2017). Most displaced people were staying with friends or relatives as of 30 May. 

More than 13,000 people (4,000 families) were evacuated in neighbouring Alagoas state between 26 and 30 May in Maceió, Marechal, Pilar and Rio Largo, owing to heavy rain, mudslides and a landslide (Floodlist, 30 May 2017).

Middle East and North Africa

Syria

Affected areas

Raqqa governorate

Cause of displacement

Conflict

Figures

About 24,000 new displacements between 18 and 22 May

Context

About 24,000 people were displaced in Raqqa between 18 and 22 May by ongoing conflict, as the Syrian Democratic Forces advanced against ISIL east and west of Raqqa city. As many as 160,000 new displacements were recorded in the governorate between 1 April and 22 May (OCHA, 23 May 2017).

South Asia

Afghanistan

Affected areas

Country-wide

Cause of displacement

Conflict

Figures

As many as 40,000 new displacements between 14 and 21 May; more than 4,500 returns from Pakistan between 14 and 21 May; about 5,600 returns from Iran between 14 and 21 May

Context

More than 35,000 people fled clashes across the country between government forces and non-state armed groups between 14 and 21 May. About 26,000 of these new displacements were concentrated within Qala-e-Zal, Kunduz, Khanabad road to Kunduz city and Khanabad district centre, in Kunduz province. About 4,200 additional people fled clashes between non-state armed groups in Chaparhar district, Nangarhar provinces, between 14 and 21 May. More than 200 people were displaced by cross-border shelling from Pakistan in Sarkani district, Kunar province, in the same period (OCHA, 21 May 2017).

More than 10,000 undocumented Afghans returned from Iran and Pakistan to Afghanistan between 14 and 20 May. In total, as many as 134,000 undocumented people returned from Iran to Afghanistan between 1 January and 20 May, and about 60,000 from Pakistan (IOM, 23 May 2017). Undocumented Afghan refugees forced by the Iranian government to return this year head to an uncertain future with the resurgent Taliban now holding more than 40 percent rural territory in Afghanistan. The majority of returns were young individuals, but some were families, including women and children (Voice of America, 21 May 2017).

More than 100,000 people were displaced across 29 provinces in Afghanistan between January and 21 May 2017. This represents a 37 percent decrease compared to the number of people displaced during the same period in 2016 (OCHA, 21 May 2017).

Bangladesh

Affected areas

Chittagong Division

Cause of displacement

Disaster

Figures

More than 470,000 new and secondary displacements between 30 and 31 May

Context

More than 470,000 people were evacuated to shelters in fifteen districts, because of strong winds, storm surge and heavy rainfall as tropical cyclone Mora made landfall on 30 May in the coastal district of Cox’s Bazar, and moved north over Chittagong division (GDACS, 30 May 2017; NIRAPAD, 30 May 2017). As many as 52,000 houses were destroyed, particularly in Cox’s Bazaar where 17,000 residences were damaged. About 350,000 evacuated people sheltered in schools (UNICEF, 30 May 2017). 

An unidentified number of people were secondarily displaced by Cyclone Mora when more than 16,000 shelters in an informal camp for Rohingya people, displaced at an earlier time from Myanmar into Bangladesh, were damaged near Cox’s Bazaar (UN Resident Coordinator Bangladesh, 31 May 2017; Paris Match, 31 May 2017; Reuters, 30 May 2017). 

The population in the affected area of Bangladesh is particularly vulnerable to hazards, having experienced Cyclone Roanu, which brought floods and landslides, this time last year (IFRC, 30 May 2017).

Sri Lanka

Affected areas

Southern and Western provinces

Cause of displacement

Disaster

Figures

As many as 78,000 new displacements between 25 and 30 May

Context

At least 78,000 people were displaced between 25 and 31 May from Sri Lanka’s Southern and Western provinces, following flash floods and landslides that destroyed at least 1,500 houses and cut off many rural villages (UNICEF, 31 May 2017; UN Resident Coordinator for Sri Lanka, 31 May 2017).  The start of the southwest monsoon on 25 May brought up to 500mm of rain in the Southern and Western provinces, home to rubber and tea plantations and their workers. “My entire village is cut off and nobody can come to this village… There have been no supplies for the past two days. Water has gone above three-storey buildings and people survive by running to higher ground,” C.M. Chandrapla told Reuters by phone from Neluwa. The Sri Lankan military sent in helicopters and boats in rescue efforts to affected regions (Reuters, 29 May 2017).

Sub-Saharan Africa

Central African Republic

Affected areas

Country-wide

Cause of displacement

Conflict

Figures

More than 64,000 new displacements between 1 and 31 May; 7,500 returns between 2 and 25 May; about 1000 secondary displacements, and cross-border returns from Chad between 10 and 25 May

Context
Basse Kotto 

About 12,500 people were displaced by violence between 1 and 31 May in the Basse Kotto prefecture, including about 3,000 people within Alindao city on 9 May; about 1,000 from Mingala to Kembe and Dimbi on 8 May; as many as 8,000 from villages east and west of Zangba Centre to Ilot blanc, and 500 to Mobaye on 11 May. The displacements were triggered by separate incidents of clashes and reprisals between armed groups. 

Haut Mbomou

At least 500 people from a Muslim community in Rafai fled to Zemio on 16 May because of threats to their lives, and sought refuge in a displacement camp (CMP, 25 May 2017).

Haute Kotto 

As many as 41,000 people were displaced within Bria on 15 May owing to clashes between armed groups between 15 and 19 May (CMP, 25 May 2017).

Mbomou

As many as 8,300 people fled within the city of Bangassou on 17 May and sought refuge within a Catholic mission from an attack led by an unidentified armed group (CMP, 25 May 2017). A total of about 17,000 people were displaced in Bangassou sub-prefecture as of 31 May, including more than 13,000 children. “More than 80 per cent of the displaced persons are living with host communities and not in camps,” said Yoko Fujimura, an expert from IOM. “Host families are sharing the little that they have with displaced people and therefore should also be supported to avoid tensions over limited resources,” she added (IOM, 30 May 2017; IOM, 31 May 2017). 

Ouham

About 1,000 displaced people (100 households) arrived at a displacement site in Mbela between 10 and 25 May. The arrivals included both refugee returns from Chad and IDPs  formerly living in Moyenne-Sido IDP camp, Ouham prefecture (CMP, 25 May 2017).

Ouham Pende

About 7,500 displaced people (1,500 households) returned progressively to Koui between 2 and 25 May. Christian IDPs sheltered close to the MINUSCA base are gradually returning to their homes or settling in abandoned houses close to the Bangladeshi base (CMP, 25 May 2017).

Nana Mambere 

At least 2,000 people fled violence in Niem to Galilee, Ndonguevakap, Ngaguene, Ngam and Yangoro between 2 and 16 May (CMP, 25 May 2017).  

As many as 504,000 people were displaced in the Central African Republic as of 25 May, a 14 per cent increase since the end of April. The majority of those displaced, more than 343,000 people, were sheltering with host families, about 155,000 were in camps, and 5,500 were hiding in the bush within Mbomou prefecture. A gradual rise in new displacements since February 2017 has occurred in the context of increased fighting between the Front populaire pour la Renaissance de la Centrafrique and the Mouvement Patriotique pour la Centrafrique (MPC); the relocation of the MPC to the Lower-kotto and Mbomou prefectures; the presence of the 3R armed group in Ouham Pende and parts of Nana-Mambere; and the theft of cattle by groups of individuals integrated in the anti-balaka militia (CMP, 25 May 2017).

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Affected areas

Kasaï, Tanganyika provinces

Cause of displacement

Conflict

Figures

As many as 24,000 new displacements between 13 and 20 May; about 1,800 secondary displacements

Context

As many as 24,000 people were newly displaced between 13 and 20 May by violence in Kasaï province. Some displaced people fled towards Kwilu province, bringing the number of provinces affected by the crisis to eight out of 26 (OCHA, 21 May 2017; ECHO Flash, 20 May 2017). 

About 1,800 IDPs were secondarily displaced on 16 May, when their shelters in the IDP site of Kaseke II were destroyed by the Congolese police. An additional unknown number of IDPs were forcibly returned to their villages of origin on 12 May. The incidents took place in the context of plans, led by provincial authorities, to dismantle IDP sites around Kalemie that hosted as many as 165,000 IDPs as of 21 May (OCHA, 21 May 2017).

Kenya

Affected areas

Coastal, North Eastern, Central, and Western provinces

Cause of displacement

Disaster

Figures

Nearly 25,000 new displacements between 1 and 19 May

Context

As many as 25,000 people were displaced in 13 counties across Kenya following heavy rains and flooding between 1 and 19 May. As of 19 May, the provinces most heavily affected were Coastal, North Eastern, Central and parts of Western. Pastoralists who had already lost livestock to prolonged drought bore the brunt of the flooding. “The floods have resulted in huge livestock losses in some areas, displacement of communities and disruption of livelihoods. ... The continuing huge livestock losses is exposing communities that had been affected by drought, further hampering their effective recovery,” said Dr. Abbas Gullet, the Secretary General of the Kenya Red Cross Society (Kenya Red Cross, 19 May 2017; Reuters, 18 May 2017).

Somalia

Affected areas

Country-wide

Cause of displacement

Disaster

Figures

More than 26,000 new displacements between 1 and 19 May

Context

More than 26,000 people were displaced in relation to drought across Somalia between 1 and 19 May, representing a significant decrease so far in May in comparison to the preceding months. More than 714,000 people were displaced by drought between 1 November 2016 and 19 May, most within the Bay region and from Lower Shabelle to Mogadishu (UNHCR, 19 May 2017).

Notes The terminology, names and designations used in this update and the material in links do not imply any opinion on the part of IDMC.
Displacement figures reported here are indicative only and have been rounded to the nearest 10 (if the figure is less than 999), 100 (if the figure is less than 10,000) or 1,000 (if the figure is 10,000 or larger).
The IDU gives priority to displacement flows that occurred or were reported in stated period. However, due to reliance on third party sources, certain entries may include information that refers to an earlier reporting period. For the purposes of this update, refugee and IDP returns do not imply the achievement of a durable solution. For IDMC-validated and peer-reviewed figures, read our Global Report on Internal Displacement.