Violence and displacements in Cabo Delgado
The humanitarian situation in Cabo Delgado province of Mozambique significantly deteriorated over the last six months, due to consecutive climatic shocks, insecurity and violence, leading to wide displacements, disruption of livelihoods and lack of access to basic services. Over 300 violent incidents have been recorded to date, of which over 100 were reported since January 2020, including attacks on villages by non-state armed actors and clashes between security forces and armed groups. Attacks by non-state armed groups destroyed more than 107 schools (including a teacher training centre) so far, affecting more than 56,000 children and almost 1,100 teachers. Over the past weeks, attacks have increased in scale and scope, with Palma, Mocimboa da Praia, Nangade, Muidumbe, Macomia and Quissanga districts hardest-hit.
Displacement has risen rapidly as violence has escalated, with 211,485 people now estimated to be internally displaced in the province. Food insecurity has also increased due to violence and disruption of livelihoods. The overlap of insecurity and climatic shocks with pre-existing vulnerabilities in Cabo Delgado—including poverty, marginalization and harmful social and gender norms—significantly heightened protection risks.
Due to the escalation in violence, humanitarian access in Cabo Delgado widely reduced in 2020, and humanitarian organizations working in the province are currently facing significant challenges to reaching people in need. Recent attacks on district capitals in Mocimboa da Praia, Quissanga, Muidumbe and Macomia districts have forced many humanitarian actors to temporarily withdraw from vital hub locations into Pemba and Maputo, reducing their ability to assess and respond to rising needs. At the same time, road transport has proven challenging throughout the province as roads and infrastructure are in poor condition and remain susceptible to weather conditions. It is estimated that 350,000 people are critically isolated due to physical access constraints in Macomia, Meluco and Quissanga districts, while 550,000 people are moderately isolated in Mocimboa da Praia, Mueda, Muidumbe, Nangade and Palma.
On 4 June 2020, the Humanitarian Country Team in collaboration with the National Institute of Disaster Management (INGC) launched a Rapid Response for Cabo Delgado aimed at scale-up urgent life-saving, life-supporting assistance and protection to 354,000 people in the period May-December 2020. The total required funding for the plan is US$ 35.5 million. A total of $7million has already been mobilized through the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), allowing humanitarian partners to urgently kick-start operations in view of the rapidly deteriorating situation in the province.