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Burkina Faso: emergency aid for over 18,000 Malian refugees

03-04-2012 News Release 12/70

Ouagadougou (Burkinabé Red Cross Society) / Abidjan (ICRC) – Several thousand Malian refugees in Burkina Faso, mainly in Soum and Oudalan provinces, are contending with a difficult humanitarian situation.

The Burkinabé Red Cross, with support from the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), has just provided emergency aid for over 18,000 people in five refugee centres.

"The refugees bear daily witness to harsh living conditions in terms of shelter, access to water and health care, and food security," said Dominique Liengme, the head of the ICRC regional delegation in Abidjan.

The refugees – in Férério, Gandafabou, Déou, Dibissi and Gountouré Gnegne, Oudalan province – were given blankets, tarpaulins, kitchen items, soap and buckets.

"We are still registering several hundred refugees every day – in addition to those already in reception centres in Soum and Oudalan provinces," said Modeste Konkobo, the Burkinabé Red Cross's national coordinator for emergency preparedness and response. "We are closely monitoring the humanitarian situation. With our partners, we are searching for appropriate ways of responding to the needs of the civilians who have been hardest hit."

Since 1992, the ICRC regional delegation in Abidjan has been covering Burkina Faso, Ghana, Togo, Benin and Côte d'Ivoire. The ICRC cooperates with the National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies to respond in a concerted, rational and swift manner to the needs of victims of armed conflict and other violence.

Since 1961, the Burkinabé Red Cross has conducted emergency operations in connection with such natural disasters and armed conflicts as the great drought of 1973, the floods of 2009 and 2010, and the various border conflicts and population movements of 1994.

For further information, please contact:
Léa Balima, Burkinabé Red Cross Ouagadougou, tel: +226 70 09 41 51
Layal Horanieh, ICRC Abidjan, tel: +225 09 39 94 04