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Internally Displaced

Page history last edited by Amy 14 years, 6 months ago

Picture taken from:  graphics8.nytimes.com/.../06pstan.span.600.jpg



What’s the Problem?           

Worldwide, there are millions of people that have been internally displaced. These people have either been forcefully removed from their homes or chosen to leave their homes as a result of violent armed conflict nearby. These people flee their homes in order to avoid danger, but instead face grueling difficulties resulting from their displacement. They don’t cross any international boundaries and have to deal with the same corrupt government that allowed the conflict that forced them from their homes to occur.

            The United Nations has made it clear that all displaced persons should enjoy every right and freedom that any non-displaced person can enjoy (Guiding Principles). According to the Declaration of Human Rights, “Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the borders of each state,” (Article 9), “Everyone has the right to own property alone as well as in association with others. No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property,” (Article 17), and “Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control,” (Article 25). In this sense, the rights of those internally displaced persons have been violated.



Where did this Problem come From?

The conflicts that force people from their homes can be a result of anything. However, for many IDPs, it is a result of violence or war in their home region. In Colombia, people were forced away from their homes due to the areas having “military, economic, or strategic importance” (BBC News). Once these people have fled their homes, they face challenges such as finding shelter and food. These people often cannot find adequate shelter— leaving them outdoors with little or no protection from the weather. Frequently, these people will settle on the outskirts of large populations already established in one area. This can lead to greater tensions and can exacerbate the problem and the challenges these people face.



What are some examples?   

When people are displaced, they face a wide array of stresses. When this stress is combined with not having adequate amounts drinking water or food readily available, people can easily become sick and are not able to see a doctor (IDMC nutrition and health). Amnesty International reports that governments provide health care, but many IDPs still die in camps from preventable diseases in Mindanao, particularly the new born (Amnesty International). Many people also cannot handle the stress that displacement puts on their bodies and lose the ability to cope with the changes going on around them. Displaced families are often forced to separate and the separated children are often recruited or abducted by the group that forced their displacement (IDMC displaced children).

            When the conflict is over, many people are unable to return to their homes. Some people are simply afraid to return to their homes because the conflict’s violence is still in the area. In Kenya, the government agreed to pay displaced persons 10,000 Kenyan shillings (equivalent to $127) to return to their homes (Klopp 19). However, there are a great number of displaced Kenyans that haven’t returned home and are now living in “urban slums without any formal support.”



What is being Done to Help? 

Both the United States Agency for International Development and the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre raise awareness and advocate for assistance to and return of displaced people (USAID policy, IDMC thematic). Amnesty International persuades governments to take action against human rights violations and sends researchers into areas with potential human rights violations. Donations can be made to the Internally Displaced Monitoring Centre at www.internal-displacement.org and Amnesty International at www.amnestyusa.org.



Picture taken from: http://www.burmaissues.org/En/idp.html




Picture taken from: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Darfur_refugee_camp_in_Chad.jpg



Works Cited

Amnesty International. (25 August 2009). Shattered Lives: Beyond the 2009-2009 Mindanao armed conflict. Retrieved from http://www.internal-displacement.org/8025708F004CE90B/(httpDocuments)/76BBC19ACCCCF0DEC12576230034FE01/$file/shattered+lives+august+2009.pdf

BBC News. Call to help Colombia’s displaced. (2009, July 16). Retrieved from http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/8150130.stm.

IDMC: Internally Displaced Children. Retrieved from http://www.internal-displacement.org/8025708F004D404D/(httpPages)/6E780F0E0FE6BA1AC1257214003D980E?OpenDocument

IDMC: Nutrition & Health. Retrieved from http://www.internal-displacement.org/8025708F004D404D/(httpPages)/27E7C556E3549FC8802570A100471F33?OpenDocument.

Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC): IDP Definition. Retrieved from http://www.internal-displacement.org/8025708F004D404D/(httpPages)/CC32D8C34EF93C88802570F800517610?OpenDocument.

Klopp, Jacqueline and Nuur Mohamud Sheekh. Can the Guiding Principles make a difference in

Kenya?. Retrieved from http://www.internal-displacement.org/8025708F004CE90B/(httpDocuments)/77DF1C6CF97A5981C12575A800486FA6/$file/FMR_GP10_19-20.pdf.

United Nations. Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement. Retrieved from http://www.amnestyusa.org/pdf/UN_guidingprinciples_intdispl.pdf.

United Nations. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Retrieved from http://www.un.org/en/documents/udhr/.




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