Operation: Opération: Angola



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Key Figures

2018 year-end results
23,750 refugee children were screened for malnutrition
5,780 people of concern received legal assistance 
4,600 people (1,170 households) were relocated from urban areas in Dundo to the Lóvua Settlement
4,160 detained refugees released in following intervention by partners 
2,480 shelters were constructed for households relocated from Dundo to the Lóvua Settlement
530 farmers received half a hectare of land for agricultural activities 
310 cases of reported SGBV incidents for which survivors received psychosocial counselling)
2019 planning figures
95% of people of concern will be provided with individual documentation
80% reported cases of child abuse, violence or exploitation will receive age and gender sensitive services
50% of active participants involved in leadership/management structures will be female

People of Concern Personnes relevant de la compétence du HCR

Decrease in
2018 70,005
2017 71,270
2016 45,698


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2018 {"categories":[2014,2015,2016,2017,2018,2019],"budget":[5.76081952,5.45305636,3.72148992,36.64218327,31.01241581,28.99877438],"expenditure":[4.43620524,3.08539954,2.06958952,19.44200489,16.9504877,null]} {"categories":[2014,2015,2016,2017,2018,2019],"p1":[5.76081952,5.45305636,3.72148992,36.64218327,31.01241581,28.99877438],"p2":[null,null,null,null,null,null],"p3":[null,null,null,null,null,null],"p4":[null,null,null,null,null,null]} {"categories":[2014,2015,2016,2017,2018,2019],"p1":[4.43620524,3.08539954,2.06958952,19.44200489,16.9504877,null],"p2":[null,null,null,null,null,null],"p3":[null,null,null,null,null,null],"p4":[null,null,null,null,null,null]}
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  • 2015
  • 2016
  • 2017
  • 2018
  • 2019

Operational environment

While the Government of Angola officially maintained an open-door policy for refugees from the Kasai Province of Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) to Lunda Norte Province, in the course of 2018 several incidents of refoulement were reported, especially with the implementation of two governmental directives named Operação Transparência and Operação Resgate. Both directives targeted irregular migrants – with over 400,000 Congolese being expelled to the DRC. During the implementation of the directives, 1,500 refugees were expelled, and many more detained, although released upon UNHCR and partner intervention.
UNHCR and the Goverment worked extensively to plan a registration exercise for refugees and asylum-seekers in the Luanda urban area. Despite the efforts, registration did not take place, resulting in refugees and asylum-seekers facing serious protection concerns due to lack of documentation.
On a more positive note, implementing regulations for the National Commission for Refugees (CNR) - were approved by Parliament in September 2018 and the CNR was constituted in October 2018. As the CNR was not yet fully operational by the end of th eyear, it did not resume refugee status determination, registration, or renewal of documentation.

Population trends

At year-end, the population of concern in Angola stood at some 70,010, comprising of 39,870 refugees and 30,140 asylum-seekers. In Lunda Norte Province, 36,450 refugees were officially registered by UNHCR; out of whom  23,300 received monthly assistance. At the end of 2018, 18,080 refugees were living in the Lóvua Settlement, while 5,220 refugees remained in urban areas, with the majority residing in Dundo, Lunda Norte.
As the registration exercise remains pending, the number of the urban population in Luanda and other provinces remains unchanged, with an estimated 15,000 refugees and 30,000 asylum-seekers, including an unknown number of new arrivals who are gradually trying to present their asylum claims.

Key achievements

  • A best interest determination panel and Standard Operating Procedures for child protection were established in Luanda and Lunda Norte Province;
  • Five boreholes were drilled: four in the refugee settlement and one in a host community in Lunda Norte;
  • Three permanent schools, each with eight classrooms were constructed in  Lunda Norte;
  • A second health clinic was constructed in Lunda Norte;
  • Two additional distribution centres were constructed in Lunda Norte.

Unmet needs

  • The implementation of 2015 Asylum Law remained pending, resulting in the lack of reliable refugee documentation;
  • Refugees in Lunda Norte had limited livelihood options and local integration opportunities;
  • Heightened uncertainty for refugees in Lunda Norte Province, following a crackdown on irregular migrants. Furthermore,  the Operação Resgate directive resulted in uncertainty for urban refugees.

Working environment

Angola is a state-party to the 1951 Convention. Since 2015, after the new Asylum law was approved, both registration and RSD stopped as the Government body in charge of refugee issues is yet to be established.
While DRC-Angola border is closed to trade and commerce, the Government of Angola has allowed access for Congolese refugees. The influx from Kasai region in the DRC that began in April 2017 has increased the number of refugees, reaching some 34,000 refugees by the end of 2017 in the Lunda Norte Province.
Refugees cannot own businesses, but can obtain work permits. Asylum-seekers cannot work. Very few are formally employed, and most are engaged in informal labour or are self-employed. Many people of concern live in precarious conditions, mainly due to the severe economic crisis, expired documentation or precarious asylum status.
While refugees formally have access to the national health system and primary education, these services are usually not free of charge, and refugees often cannot afford to pay fees. UNHCR is advocating with the Government of Angola to implement the Asylum law and carry out a registration exercise for the urban caseload in country.
UNHCR has established a protection network to conduct border monitoring and monitor POC in the provinces where UNHCR is not present. UNHCR assists the Government of Angola in coordinating the inter-agency refugee response at the national and field level. Weekly Inter-Agency coordination meetings are held in Luanda and Dundo with the participation of UN agencies and partners.

Key priorities

In 2018, UNHCR will focus on:
  • Support to the Government in implementation of the new asylum law and restoring the asylum process in Angola
  • Strengthen protection monitoring and advocate for a favorable protection environment
  • Ensure multi-sector response to the refugees including Congolese new arrivals
Latest contributions
  • 17-JUL-2019
  • 16-JUL-2019
  • 11-JUL-2019
  • 10-JUL-2019
  • 08-JUL-2019
    European Union
  • Kuwait
  • 05-JUL-2019
  • 04-JUL-2019

    private donors

  • European Union
  • Japan
  • 03-JUL-2019
  • 02-JUL-2019
  • 30-JUN-2019

    private donors

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