Internal Displacement Update
Issue 31: 8 February - 7 March 2018

Issue 31 map
Feature

Syria

Affected areas

Aleppo, Rural Damascus

Cause of displacement

Conflict

Figures

138,000 new displacements between 20 January and 17 March

Context

More than 138,000 new displacements between 20 January and 17 March from Afrin district in Aleppo governorate and from Eastern Ghouta enclave in Rural Damascus.

Approximately 20,000 people were displaced from Eastern Ghouta, mostly to Hamouriyeh area between 11 and 17 March because of the continued government offensive. This includes more than 600 people who were evacuated from Duma and unverified 300 people from East Harasta. It is not clear how many people from the priority medical evacuation list were part of the displaced or evacuated population (OCHA, 17 Mar 2018). Furthermore, it is estimated that at least 20,000 people were displaced between 1 February and 13 March within the enclave (OCHA, 13 Feb 2018).

Approximately 98,000 people were displaced from Afrin district, between 20 January and 18 March as a result of the Turkish intervention. The number of displacements within Afrin is unknown (OCHA, 18 Mar 2018).

East Asia and Pacific

American Samoa, Fiji, Tonga

Affected areas

American Samoa; Islands of Eua and Tongatapu, Fiji; Ono-i-Lau, Tonga

Cause of displacement

Disasters

Figures

Around 7,300 new displacements between 10 and 16 February due to Tropical Cyclone Gita

Context

More than 1,100 people were displaced in American Samoa by Tropical Cyclone Gita as it began its trajectory on 10 February, causing housing damage due to flooding. According to FEMA assessments, around 1,800 houses were destroyed and 1,100 people were in shelters  (FEMA, 14 Feb 2018).Gita was a category one storm when it struck American Samoa and increased in intensity as it continued its south south-west trajectory. Gita increased to category two as it moved towards Niue on Saturday 11 February. On Monday 12 February, the system continued west approaching Tonga intensifying to a Category 4 (IFRC, 12 Feb 2018). Around 5,700 people were displaced to evacuation shelters between 10 and 16 February in Tonga because of the  to impact of the storm (IFRC, 16 Feb 2018). Around 470 people, or the population of Ono-i-Lau, Fiji, were evacuated on 15 February to several evacuation centres inside the island (ECHO, 15 Feb 2018).

Indonesia

Affected areas

Aceh, Central Java, Lampung, North Maluku, North Sulawesi, West Java, West Nusa Tenggara

Cause of displacement

Disaster

Figures

Around 15,000 new displacements between 27 January and 11 March

Context

As many as 2,700 people were newly displaced in the province of Central Java between 8 and 25 February due to flooding caused by heavy rains and the overflowing of various rivers throughout the area. Displacement was also caused by landslides and risks of landslides due to the rains. Of those displaced people around 320 of them were displaced in Jepara Regency (Central Java) on 8 February due to flooding. The local disaster management agency reported that the flood was recorded at two meters height and inundated at least 85 houses (AHA Centre, 8 Feb 2018). More than 1,000 people evacuated in Tegal and Brebes Regency (Central Java) on 12 February following intense rains and flooding due to the overflowing of Pemali River (AHA Centre, 12 Feb 2018). As many as 980 people were displaced between 21 and 25 February following a landslide caused by heavy rain in Brebes Regency (Central Java). The heavy rain has also caused the Cisanggarung river to burst its banks. Disaster officials say the overflowing river has inundated a railway line in Brebes Regency, disrupting services between Cirebon to Purwokerto (Floodlist, 23 Feb 2018; BNPB, 25 Feb 2018). Finally, as many as 410 people were displaced in Wonogiri Regency (Central Java) due landslides and the risk of landslides on 23 February. Those displaced are staying in shelters and with relatives (BNPB, 23 Feb 2018).

In West Java province, as many as 3,400 people were also displaced between 21 February and 11 March due to flooding caused by rain and rivers overflowing. Of these, 1,200 were evacuated between 21 and 28 February following a landslide in Kuningan Regency (West Java) (AHA Centre, 21 Feb 2018). As many as 2,100 people were displaced between 22 February and 11 March in Bandung (West Java) due to heavy rainfall and flooding from the overflowing of Cikapundung, Cusangkuy, and Citarum Rivers (BNPB, 11 Mar 2018). Around 90 people were evacuated between 23 and 24 February in Pangadaran Regency (West Java) following flooding. The height of flooding was observed up to 2.8 meters in several points along the Citanduy River, resulting in 32 units of houses submerged (AHA Centre, 23 Feb 2018; BNPB, 24 Feb 2018).

In addition, around 100 people were displaced in North Sulawesi province on 9 February, around 200 in North Maluka province on 12 February, about 4600 in Lampung on 26 February and around 4200 in West Nusa Tenggara province between 5 and 6 March due to flooding and landslides caused by heavy rains (AHA Centre, 9 Feb 2018; 12 Feb 2018; 26 Feb 2018; 5 Mar 2018; BNPB, 12 Feb 2018).

A total of 12 transgender women have fled for their safety following public humiliation by local authorities on 27 January in North Aceh (Aceh), when they were pulled out of the hair salon where they worked, kicked and slapped. These women continue to suffer the repercussions of police behavior as some have lost their livelihoods and have been forced to flee their homes fearing for their own safety. “This is a complete failure by the Indonesian authorities to protect their human rights,” said Amnesty International Indonesia Executive Director Usman Hamid (Amnesty International, 14 Feb 2018).

Papua New Guinea

Affected areas

Enga, Hela, Southern Highlands, Western Provinces

Cause of displacement

Disaster

Figures

Around 18,000 new displacements between 26 February and 10 March

Context

Around 18,000 people were newly displaced to 26 informal care centres in Papua New Guinea following a 7.5 magnitude earthquake that struck the island on 26 February (OCHA, 15 Mar 2018). A series of aftershocks followed, including a 6.8 magnitude quake on 8 March (OCHA, 10 Mar 2018). A state of emergency was declared for Enga, Hela, Southern Highlands and Western Provinces following the earthquake and resulting landslides (ECHO, 27 Feb 2018; Govt. PNG, 1 Mar 2018). According to initial humanitarian assessments, over 544,000 people are affected across the five hit provinces and over 270,000 people require immediate humanitarian assistance (OCHA, 15 Mar 2018).

Philippines

Affected areas

ARMM, MIMAROPA, Region VI, VII, VIII, XII, XIII (CARAGA)

Cause of displacement

Disaster and conflict

Figures

About 160,000 new displacements between 23 January and 6 March

Context

As many as 200 people were displaced between 5 and 20 February by armed conflict in Butuan City (Region XIII, CARAGA) following exchanges between an armed group and the military forces (DROMIC, 20 Feb 2018). Additionally, a total of 1,200 people were also forced to evacuate between 23 January and 20 February in Surigao del Sur (Region XIII, CARAGA) due to military operations (DROMIC, 20 Feb 2018).

About 8,000 people were displaced between 16 and 27 February in Maguindanao Province (ARMM) due to armed conflict between the Armed Forces of the Philippines and a group of Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighter. Of those displaced, about 2,800 people are currently taking shelter in evacuation centers while about 5,200 people are staying with relatives and friends (DROMIC, 27 Feb 2018).

As many as 890 people were displaced between 3 and 6 March in Cotabato Province (Region XII) due to armed conflict between members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and the Moro National Liberation Front.Of those displaced, 583 people are taking shelter in evacuation centers and 303 are currently staying with relatives and friends (DROMIC, 6 Mar 2018).

Almost 150,000 people were displaced between 11 February and 2 March in Region VI, VII, VIII, XIII, and MIMAROPA due to heavy rain, landslides and flooding from Tropical Storm Sanba (locally named “Basyang”). As of 2 March, 1,207 people are still displaced in Region XIII, of which 805 people are staying inside an evacuation center and 402 people are staying with families/friends (ECHO, 15 Feb 2018; DROMIC, 2 Mar 2018).

Latin America and the Caribbean

Bolivia

Affected areas

Tiquipaya

Cause of displacement

Disaster

Figures

Around 800 new displacements between 6 and 12 February

Context

Around 800 people were evacuated from the municipality of Tiquipaya between 6 and 12 February due to torrential rain in Cochabamba department which caused major devastation.The Taquiña River burst its banks during the night of Tuesday 6 February, flooding streets with tons of muds, rocks and debris (Floodlist, 13 Feb 2018).

Colombia

Affected areas

Antioquia, Chocó, Norte de Santande

Cause of displacement

Conflict

Figures

As many as 2,000 new displacements between 19 January and 23 February

Context

As many as 2,000 new conflict displacements were registered between 19 January and 23 February. The figure includes as many as 1,700 people who were displaced from rural areas in Cáceres, Antioquia, to urban areas and Tarazá municipality between 19 January and 23 February due to clashes over territory between unknown armed groups and new self-proclaimed group ‘Los Caparrapos’ (OCHA, 23 Feb 2018). As many as 200 people were also displaced between 1 and 18 February from Filogringo, Norte de Santander, to urban areas due to clashes between the army and the Popular Liberation Army  (OCHA, 18 Feb 2018). Furthermore, 64 people were displaced from the indigenous zone of Tahamí, Chocó, to Quibdó due to fears of clashes between the National Liberation Army and la Fuerza Pública between 14 and 17 February. The people internally displaced are in urgent need of shelter, food and access to healthcare (OCHA, 17 Feb 2018).

South Asia

India

Affected areas

Jammu & Kashmir, Tripura

Cause of displacement

Conflict

Figures

About 9,700 new displacements between 22 February and 6 March

Context

More than 2,600 people fled their homes between 22 February and 1 March in Uri, Baramulla district of Jammu & Kashmir, following exchanges in gunfire and mortar shelling between India and Pakistan. As many as 1,300 people fled to government shelters while an equal number were staying with host families in different areas. According to residents, it is the first time since the 2003 ceasefire that heavy artillery has been used in the area (Greater Kashmir, 24 Feb 2018; First Post, 26 Feb 2018; Scroll.in, 26 Feb 2018).

About 7,100 people were left homeless between 3 and 6 March following clashes between the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Communist Party of India (Marxist) supporters during assembly elections in Tripura (Hindustan Times, 4 Mar 2018; The Hindu, 6 Mar 2018; Scroll.in, 7 Mar 2018).

Sub-Saharan Africa

Angola

Affected areas

Cuando Cubango, Cuanza Norte, Luanda, Maquela de Zombo, Uige

Cause of displacement

Disaster

Figures

Approximately 5,400 new displacements between January and 5 March

Context

More than 4,100 people were displaced between 1 February and 5 March in Luanda due to heavy rains (ANGOP, 22 Feb 2018; Floodlist, 5 Mar 2018). As many as 1,000 people were displaced in Cuando Cubango between 26 February and 5 March due to heavy rains which destroyed their houses (Floodlist, 05 Mar 2018). Additionally, as many as 250 people were displaced in Samba Caju and Lucala municipalities in Cuanza Norte due to heavy rains between 1 and 23 February (AllAfrica, 23 Feb 2018).

Central African Republic

Affected areas

Basse-Kotto, Mbomou, Ouaka, Ouham-Pende

Cause of displacement

Conflict

Figures

11,630 new displacements between 7 February and 5 March

Context

In Ouham prefecture, about 350 people were displaced between 7 and 26 February towards Batangafo due to clashes between farmers and pastoralists (OCHA, 26 Feb 2018). In Basse-Kotto prefecture, about 60 people were displaced between 7 and 26 February from Wanga to Dimbi due to armed clashes (OCHA, 12 Feb 2018). In Ouham-Pendé prefecture, as many as 120 people were displaced from Yeme, Dilouki, Ndim Centre and Kounang to Ngaoundaye between 7 and 12 February due to MINUSCA military operations against armed groups in the area (OCHA, 12 Feb 2018). About 2,000 people from Nzakoudou were also displaced to Ndim, Kounang, and Touloulou between 10 and 16 February due to threats from armed groups (OCHA, 18 Feb 2018). Additionally, as many as 600 people were displaced on 21 February in Korazian because armed men burned their houses (OCHA, 28 Feb 2018). In Ouaka prefecture, about 2,500 people were displaced between 4 and 28 February in Kandja, Bangui-Kette, Boyo and Maleyo due to armed clashes (OCHA, 28 Feb 2018). In Mbomou prefecture, as many as 6,000 people were displaced between 3 and 5 March from Dembia to Rafai due to an armed incursion into the village (OCHA, 5 Mar 2018).

Kenya

Affected areas

Nyanza, Taita Taveta, Trans Nzoia

Cause of displacement

Conflict and disaster

Figures

Approximately 2,400 new displacements between 1 February and 8 March

Context

As many as 150 people have been forced to evacuate their homes between 1 and 4 March due to flooding in Taita Taveta (Floodlist, 4 Mar 2018). As many as 2,000 people were rendered homeless between 1 and 8 March by storms in Nyanza (Standard Media, 8 Mar 2018).

Approximately 200 people were displaced between 1 and 25 February in Trans Nzoia due to land dispute when their houses were torched (Standard Media, 25 Feb 2018).

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Affected areas

North Kivu, South Kivu

Cause of displacement

Conflict

Figures

About 32,000 new displacements between 10 February and 6 March; about 19,000 returns between January and 6 March

Context

In North Kivu, about 3,100 people have been displaced as of 19 February due to clashes between armed groups in the first week of February (OCHA, 19 Feb 2018). Additionally, about 2,900 people fled clashes between armed groups and the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (FARDC) between 20 January and 22 February in various localities in northern Beni territory and Isale-Bulambo zone finding refuge in Mutwanga health zone in Beni territory (OCHA, 5 Mar 2018). More than 750 people fled on 14 February in Lubero territory seeking refuge at Kamandi Gîte as a result of clashes between armed groups and the FARDC in villages on the west coast of Lake Edward . About 1,500 people fled clashes between armed groups and the FARDC between 17 and 18 February in Butare territory seeking refuge elsewhere in the same territory (OCHA, 26 Feb 2018).

In South Kivu, more than 11,000 people were displaced between 10 and 18 February in Shabunda territory due to clashes between the FARDC and armed groups. About 10,000 people fled Kasungulu in Shabunda territory in the direction of Kilembwe, Fizi territory, on 28 February due to clashes between armed groups and the FARDC. and About 2,500 people fled intercommunal violence on 28 February in Rwenena and Kibirizi, Uvira territory, seeking refuge in Luberizi, Mutarule, Nyakabere and Sange. At the same time, about 2,275 people who were seeking refuge in different areas of Uvira territory have started the journey home since the beginning of February after fleeing violence in Ubwari peninsula in Fizi territory in January (OCHA, 6 Mar 2018). Additionally, in Kazimia health zone, Fizi territory, humanitarian actors estimate that up to 11,375 inhabitants of the area have returned home as of 20 February after fleeing clashes between the FARDC and armed groups in January (OCHA, 20 Feb 2018). As of 27 February, about 5,000 people had also returned to their villages in the Batali village group due to a recent improvement in security conditions (OCHA, 27 Feb 2018).

South Sudan

Affected areas

Bor, Central Equatoria, Jonglei, Unity

Cause of displacement

Conflict and development

Figures

At least 7,600 new displacements between 11 and 23 February

Context

In Central Equatoria, more than 3,400 were displaced between 11 and 13 February from Mukaya to Yei town following clashes in the area (OCHA, 13 Mar 2018; Voice of America, 13 Feb 2018; ACLED). An unknown number of people were also displaced in Koch county, Unity state, as houses were burnt and civilians targeted in fighting that took place on 16 and 17 February. Inter-communal fighting forced about 3,200 people to flee between 16 and 23 February from their homes in Jonglei state to Terereka in Central Equatoria due to inter-communal fighting (Radio Tamazuj, 26 Feb 2018).

More than 1,000 people were displaced on 13 February as their houses in Bor town, Jonglei state, were demolished to make way for the construction of new roads (Voice of America, 13 Feb 2018; Eye Radio, 15 Feb 2018). According to Bor town Mayor Gai Makhor, no compensation will be offered to the displaced residents.

Notes For the purposes of this update, refugee and IDP returns do not imply the achievement of a durable solution. 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.