Durable Solutions for Internally Displaced Persons: Challenges in eastern Chad | Internally Displaced Person

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Between 2005 and 2007, a combination of regional conflict and national crisis led to the internal displacement of about 180,000 people in eastern Chad. However, the situation has since changed. By March 2012, when this report was produced, incursions by the Janjaweed militia and conflict between government forces and Chadian rebels had largely ended. The Chadian government is now seeking to put an end to the distinction between displaced persons and host communities. Internally displaced persons currently have the choice between three solutions: local integration, relocation or voluntary return to their home village. The goal of this joint report is to reflect on the decisive actions that could provide durable solutions for displacement, taking into account the rights and needs of affected communities. Even if the causes of the initial displacement have now been contained, creating the right set of circumstances for long-term sustainable development still remains a challenge. The Chadian government has publicly recognized that it is responsible for setting up an appropriate framework for durable solutions, ensuring security, rule of law, respect for human rights and access to basic services
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  JOINT BRIEFING PAPER MARCH 2012 www.oxfam.org   DURABLE SOLUTIONS FOR INTERNALLY DISPLACED PERSONS CHALLENGES IN EASTERN CHAD ‘States Parties shall seek lasting solutions to the problem of displacement by promoting and creating satisfactory conditions for voluntary return, local integration or relocation on a sustainable basis and in circumstances of safety and dignity.’    Article 11 of the African Union Convention for the Protection and  Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons in Africa  2 Durable Solutions for Internally Displaced Persons: Challenges in eastern Chad SUMMARY Between 2005 and 2007, a combination of regional conflict (notably in Darfur) and national crisis (insecurity, along with inter-community and political tensions) led to the internal displacement of about 180,000 people in eastern Chad and, in particular, in the regions of Ouaddaï and Sila. The situation has since changed. Today, incursions by the Janjaweed militia and conflict between government forces and Chadian rebels have ended. The Chadian government is now seeking to put an end to the distinction between displaced persons and host communities. 1 Internally displaced persons (IDPs) currently have the choice between three durable solutions: local integration, relocation or voluntary return to their home village. Our organizations aim to provide assistance to the displaced, returned and host communities in eastern Chad. The goal of this joint report is reflect on the decisive actions that could provide durable solutions for displaced communities, taking into account the rights and needs of the people concerned. The information contained in this report is based on our permanent presence in Sila and Ouaddaï, as well as numerous interviews held with members of displaced, relocated and repatriated communities (98 individual interviews and 59 group discussions between October and November 2011), authorities and humanitarian aid workers at the various IDPs sites, and host villages and home villages in Sila and Assoungha. Interviews focused on reasons motivating the choices of IDPs (integration, relocation or return), the amount of information and assistance they had received to help them with their choice, living conditions in IDPs sites or home villages (security and means of subsistence), as well as their perception of the government’s contribution to providing for conditions that would allow for the successful implementation of more durable solutions. Even if the causes of the initial displacement have now been contained, creating the right set of circumstances that will ensure that choices for settlement have a truly long-lasting outcome is difficult. Several challenges remain: ã  The Chadian government has publicly recognized that it is responsible for setting up an appropriate framework for durable solutions, ensuring security, rule of law, respect for human rights and access to basic services, land and means of subsistence. However, very little has been done by the government to make this a reality. In fact there is hardly any state presence and still little evidence of any significant rehabilitation. ã  Crime (made worse by the circulation of arms and general sense of impunity) has had a negative impact on the work of non-government organizations (NGOs) and the United Nations (UN), and has reduced humanitarian access to certain areas, threatening the implementation of programs intended to assist returns. ã  Populations claim a lack of protection against crime and inter-community tensions. ã  Humanitarian aid lacks coordination, a common overview of the regions concerned, and a common reflection on the needs to be covered and strategies to be adopted.  Durable Solutions for Internally Displaced Persons: Challenges in eastern Chad 3 ã  The humanitarian community has faced difficulties in understanding and analyzing the details of the current situation, the lingering local and regional tensions, people’s intentions and their sources of livelihood. It is thus struggling to set up programmes which meet humanitarian needs and strengthen the resilience of the communities. ã  IDPs now have new expectations due to a growing awareness of their civil and economic rights as citizens and an increasingly urban lifestyle. These new aspirations were not anticipated in initial plans. ã  Regions affected by internal displacement are faced with immense humanitarian and development needs, but lack funding and local development capacity to meet these needs. ã  This report includes detailed recommendations for the Chadian government, UN agencies, donors, and the humanitarian and development community in order to tackle these challenges, including: ã  Greater involvement by the Chadian government in developing the region and promoting durable solutions to displacement. The state could be a driving force for this by providing for greater presence of state representatives, increased financing for the Global Recovery Program for eastern Chad (PGRET) and regular reporting on its contributions, and more active guidance for the process on the basis of its priorities. ã  Improving security in eastern Chad will be key to enabling humanitarian and development aid workers to meet the needs of the population. Only the state can restore authority and the rule of law by deploying security forces and strengthening the  justice system, ensuring that Chad’s existing security mechanisms have the means to function effectively. ã  Recurring tensions and inter-community disputes must be resolved through consultation with communities, and support to inter-communal dialogues and traditional dispute resolution mechanisms, as well as application of legislation on pastoral migration routes. ã  Interventions must be better coordinated, with information available for the different areas of the region summarized and mapped (presence of State services, NGOs and movements of the populations) to enable a better common understanding of the context.  4 Durable Solutions for Internally Displaced Persons: Challenges in eastern Chad METHODOLOGY The information and data contained in this report come from our permanent presence in Sila and Ouaddaï in eastern Chad, as well as numerous interviews with IDPs, returnees, authorities and humanitarian aid workers in the areas where we are involved. Our organizations used the same questionnaire to carry out 98 individual interviews and 59 group discussions between October and November 2011 in the following venues: ã  In Sila: at the Aradib and Habile sites in Koukou, at the Koloma, Gouroukoune, Koubigou, Gassiré, Ganachour and Sannour sites in Goz Beida, as well as the return villages of Gondji Baka, Djédidé, Djenou,  Arangou, Djorlo, Arangou 2, Am Hiteb and Amharaz. ã  In Assoungha: at the sites of Arkoum, Alacha, Goundiang and Hilé Déyé, as well as the relocation villages of Borota and Hileket. ã  Interviews focused on reasons motivating the choice made by these people to integrate locally, relocate or return to their home villages, the amount of information or assistance they had received in order to make this choice, their living conditions (livelihoods and security) at the sites and home villages, as well as their perception of government involvement in providing for durable solutions.
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