Since mid-January, fighting between government forces and separatist rebels in Mali has forced hundreds of thousands of people to flee their homes. In neighboring Burkina Faso, Malian refugees indicate that they are fleeing due to fear of possible counter-attacks by the Malian army, banditry, and general lawlessness in the north. The precarious security situation at the border with Mali is preventing the UN Refugee Agency from monitoring the conditions of refugees in some areas. This crisis is compounded by the fact that many of the Malian refugees are arriving in parts of Burkina Faso - as well as Niger - that are among the most affected by food insecurity in the region.
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Many young refugees like Layla, were forced to leave their education behind in Mali. While lifesaving assistance, such as food and water is ramping up, there is limited support for education services.
Refugees International (RI) advocates for lifesaving assistance and protection for displaced people and promotes solutions to displacement crises.
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