Sudan: Hundreds of Unaccompanied Sudanese Children in Chad Camps

Irdimi / Babanousa — Hundreds of unaccompanied Sudanese children in the Irdimi camp in eastern Chad are enduring harsh living conditions following the cessation of services provided by an organisation that had been caring for them since November of last year.

A Sudanese refugee residing in the Irdimi camp told Radio Dabanga that approximately 700 unaccompanied children in the camp arrived with refugees fleeing West Darfur.

“The organisation Hayat had been offering them care and support, but abruptly ceased its operations in November. When questioned about the withdrawal, camp administrators cited the end of their mandate and the transition of responsibilities to another childcare organisation”, the Irdimi camp resident said.

The conditions of the children were described as harsh and extremely complex. “They have become reliant on fellow refugees for all their needs, including children who are unwell or have special needs, whose needs we are unable to fully meet.”

As reported by Radio Dabanga in mid-January, at least five Sudanese refugee children died of starvation in Irdimi camp.

In Tolom camp in eastern Chad, Sudanese refugees complain of deteriorating services and difficulties accessing water and other essential amenities.

According to the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) Sudan weekly snapshot covering January 11 to 18, about 634,000 Darfuris crossed the border to eastern Chad since the outbreak of the war in mid-April, making Chad the country hosting the highest number of Sudanese refugees.

West Kordofan

In Babanousa, West Kordofan, displaced residents fleeing violence in the town are suffering of food shortages.

A woman who fled Babanousa told Radio Dabanga she undertook an “arduous journey by foot” to flee her town in West Kordofan after violence broke out earlier this month. “Upon returning to Babanousa to retrieve my belongings, I and many others were shocked to find that all our possessions were stolen.”

According to official figures, approximately 65,000 people were displaced from Babanousa due to clashes between the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) the and Rapid Support Forces (RSF), with dozens killed by artillery shelling and airstrikes.

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