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A woman looks over Dzaleka Refugee Camp, Malawi, where thousands are dependent on rations provided by the World Food Programme. Photograph: Angela Jimu/Majority World/Getty Images 
 
Hundreds at Dzaleka camp told they are no longer eligible for food supplies from the World Food Programme.

Mornings are the worst time for Fayness Alpha. Her children wail from hunger most often when they wake up, she says. Alpha was 15 when she first arrived at Dzaleka – a refugee camp in Dowa, 40km from Malawi’s capital Lilongwe – having been forced from her home in the Democratic Republic of the Congo by bandit attacks. A decade later, she is married with three children. But, like thousands of others, she is unable to find work in the camp or to leave, rendering her dependent on rations provided by the UN’s World Food Programme (WFP). 

But the WFP – underfunded and facing pressure from other emergencies – “re-evaluated” the needs of the camp’s inhabitants. Alpha was among hundreds who found themselves removed from the list for receiving monthly food supplies. Many say this has left them destitute.

“My husband and I are jobless and depend on rations to survive. Ever since we were taken off the list, life has been very hard and we’re just surviving on the grace of God,” says Alpha.

Fayness Alpha has lived in Dzaleka refugee camp for a decade.
Fayness Alpha has lived in Dzaleka refugee camp for a decade. Photograph: Handout

“Life is complicated now, and as you can see my children are crying because of hunger. We’re living a difficult and painful life.” She has appealed to WFP staff to reconsider her situation.

The UN conducted a household “vulnerability profiling exercise” of 10,846 refugee and asylum-seeker households in Dzaleka in 2020. Ranking households by income and need, it determined that 678 had found alternative livelihoods, making them food secure. But many of those who found themselves removed say they are baffled as to why.

Dzaleka was established 25 years ago in response to an increase in the number of people fleeing genocide and wars in Burundi, Rwanda and DRC. With an initial capacity for 10,000 people, the camp now houses about 50,000.

Malawi is again seeing new arrivals of people pushed by conflicts, civil unrest and political and economic instability across the region. About 600 people came after being displaced by Mozambique’s floods in February.I am living in a desperate situation. We might die of hunger, Elie Zagabe

Paul Turnbull, WFP director for Malawi, says the growing number of people in the camp is stretching resources. “In the current economic context, especially with the conflict in Ukraine, funding is very difficult.

“WFP appreciates the support it gets from its funding partners to provide food assistance to refugees in Malawi and elsewhere. The number of refugees in Dzaleka camp has more than doubled since 2013. With limited access to business opportunities, WFP assistance is the primary source of food for most people. Alternative sources of livelihoods in the camp have also been affected by the pandemic,” he says.

Dzaleka refugees camp, Malawi
Dzaleka was intended to house 10,000 people but 50,000 now live there. Photograph: Courtesy of There is Hope

More than half of those removed from the list have appealed to the WFP, including Elie Zagabe, 37, who escaped from war in DRC 16 years ago. He enrolled for community learning and eventually found a job helping out in a primary school. But he earns a minimum amount and believes his family’s food rations have been taken away because of a mistake. 

“I lost my position [on the list] because the two children are seriously sick. Last two weeks, the second-born was very sick and admitted at Dowa clinic with pneumonia. I think this is because of the cold here at the camp. I was with the child at the hospital while my wife was taking care of the other child at home.

 

“The people who were doing the survey didn’t approach me. I found them at my neighbour’s place and I told them to reach my home but they said since they had seen me we could interact right there.” He says others he knows on the same salary have stayed on the list, and his attempt to appeal against the decision has been in vain.

“I’m living in a desperate situation. We sometimes spend the night without food. My children cry of hunger and I have nowhere to turn to. We might die of hunger,” he says.

Of the 325 households who appealed, WFP says 103 are eligible to be “reprofiled” using the same vulnerability questionnaire used in 2020, although this does not guarantee being reinstated on the list.   Dowa, Guardian

Photo Courtesy AA

Sudan has summoned four ambassadors over the participation of their diplomatic vehicles in protests in the country, according to local media on Wednesday.

Al-Sudani newspaper said the foreign ministry summoned the ambassador of an Arab country and three western envoys, without identifying them.

The ministry informed the ambassadors of its protest over the participation of diplomatic vehicles belonging to them in demonstrations in the capital Khartoum.

The newspaper pointed out that the Arab ambassador apologized to the Sudanese government, after he explained that one of the drivers in the embassy had used the car without their knowledge.

There was no immediate comment from the Sudanese Foreign Ministry on the report, but on Jan. 27, the ruling Sovereign Council considered that the activities of some diplomatic missions in Khartoum "contradict diplomatic norms and violate the country's sovereignty."

Since last October 25, Sudan has witnessed protests in response to exceptional measures taken by army chief Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, most notably the imposition of a state of emergency and the dissolution of Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok’s transitional government, a move decried by political forces as a “military coup”. AA

 

France has been hosting former Rwanda Major General Aloys Ntiwiragabo, a key suspect in the 1994 Rwandan Genocide.

The ex-general has been living in France for the last decade, Mediapart, the French investigative journal reported on Sunday.

France has been refusing to extradite or deport Ntiwiragabo, .

Ntiwiragabo has been residing in France without a residence permit, despite being the the subject of an Interpol wanted persons Red Notice, the journal said.

According to Mediapart, Ntiwiragabo had requested asylum from France but was denied for being held guilty of war crimes, and yet was not deported - nor extradited to Rwanda.

Chief of military intelligence

Mediapart earlier reported that Ntiwiragabo had been living in Orleans, south of Paris.

Rwanda had sent a letter to France requesting Ntiwiragabo's extradition in August 2020, at which point the country - along with Interpol and Rwanda -  had already dropped an arrest warrant for him.

Ntiwiragabo is said to be one of the leaders who orchestrated the Rwandan Genocide. 

He had been Chief of Military Intelligence and Deputy Chief of Staff of the Army up until 1993.

Accused of crimes against humanity, he is also the founder of the armed rebel group Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR). - TRT World

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