Operation: Opération: Mali



Latest update of camps and office locations 21  Nov  2016. By clicking on the icons on the map, additional information is displayed.

Key Figures

2016 end-year results
2,600 IDPs were sensitized on human rights
210 Mauritanian and urban refugee children were enrolled in primary school 
14 water points were rehabilitated or constructed
6 schools were rehabilitated in areas of return
2017 planning figures
1,000 Mauritanian refugees will have identity documents issued
98% of primary school-age Mauritanian refugee children will be enrolled in primary education
95% of returnees will have their national rights re-established
90% of returnee households will have their basic needs met with multipurpose cash grants or vouchers 
60% of urban refugees with disabilities will receive services for their specific needs

People of Concern Personnes relevant de la compétence du HCR

Decrease in
2016 100,247
2015 135,816
2014 291,615


[["Refugees",17512],["Asylum-seekers",301],["IDPs",36690],["Returned IDPs",35986],["Returned refugees",9758]]
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2016 {"categories":[2012,2013,2014,2015,2016,2017],"budget":[null,32.21080715,69.58910338,67.860516734,49.1719132,41.00753165],"expenditure":[null,17.59712543,20.65237349,14.86664134,13.37227655,null]} {"categories":[2012,2013,2014,2015,2016,2017],"p1":[null,5.21061354,20.45192283,48.924988312,27.08867361,13.39905177],"p2":[null,null,null,0.12311877,1.06694838,0.956948],"p3":[null,null,null,10.754399482,17.77571883,25.50618688],"p4":[null,27.00019361,49.13718055,8.05801017,3.24057238,1.145345]} {"categories":[2012,2013,2014,2015,2016,2017],"p1":[null,2.8587129,11.38623867,9.3844582,7.040851,null],"p2":[null,null,null,0.10197148,0.57564893,null],"p3":[null,null,null,3.67058966,4.66259468,null],"p4":[null,14.73841253,9.26613482,1.709622,1.09318194,null]}
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  • 2014
  • 2015
  • 2016
  • 2017

Working environment

The operational environment in Mali in 2016 was characterized by continuing insecurity. Serious clashes between the national army and armed groups took place in Kidal and a terrorist attack was carried out at Gao airport, causing serious damage. Although some progress has been noted by creating Mecanisme Opérationnel de Coordination (MOC), that brings together insurgent armed groups and malian authorities to implement the peace agreement, the Government of Mali and international community are still facing difficulties in implementing the peace agreement signed in Algeria in July 2014.
Insecurity continued in northern Mali, characterized by a number of terrorist attacks and explosive devices.

Population trends

  • According to the Government of Mali, in 2016 there were 17,500 refugees (Mauritanian and urban refugees), 36,700 IDPs and 474,200 IDPs who returned to  their places of origin.

Achievements and impact

  • UNHCR organized and conducted sensitization campaigns against sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) in refugee settlements. This allowed four female circumcisers to abandon this practice. They were enrolled in income generating projects to compensate for lost livelihoods.
  • In regard to IDPs, 261 humanitarian actors, including government personnel, were trained on international protection.
  • Some 13,500 Malian returnees from asylum countries were registered in 2016. Of this group 8,516 individuals received reintegration assistance through cash-based interventions (CBI) 

Unmet needs

  • 62 per cent of children did not have birth certificates
  • 12,000 returnees, including those who returned in 2015, did not receive cash-based assistance
  • Only 44 per cent of urban refugees benefitted from self-reliance activities
  • The coverage of peaceful coexistence activities between host communities and returnees was insufficient
  • Only 390 refugees have been assisted on a total of 838 who have opted for the local integration as a durable solution.


UNHCR’s activities in Mali are implemented in a very complex context, with serious conflict and emergency related challenges. The humanitarian operating environment in the North remains volatile and security is fragile. Humanitarian access to populations of concern, particularly for international staff, remains restricted, impeding the effective delivery of assistance.
Despite the volatile security conditions, tripartite agreements for the voluntary repatriation of Malian refugees have been signed with the Governments of Burkina Faso and Niger. However, the ongoing insecurity has hampered a large return operation to the North. Renewed clashes between April and August 2015 have deterred some Malian refugees from returning home. With the signing of the Peace and Reconciliation Agreement in June 2015, the roadmap for an inclusive peace process remains an important challenge, in particular in the areas of security and social and political support.
UNHCR’s return and reintegration strategy targets 16 localities in the North. In this context, the Office will focus on solutions-oriented planning and results, and strengthen synergies between protection, social cohesion and solutions, working with all stakeholders to support community-based and peaceful coexistence interventions.
The Government has granted refugees – originating mainly from Mauritania – access to legal and social economic integration and allowed refugees to settle in host communities. The Government has also issued birth certificates for 6,500 refugee children and given refugees access to education and health services. UNHCR’s refugee programme in 2016 will emphasize strengthening access to the refugee status determination procedure and supporting local integration. The Office will also advocate for the inclusion of refugees into the national development plan.