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March 17, 2008

On Wednesday, February 27, 2008, four ethnic Hmong families from the Huai Nam Khao refugee camp in Thailand were sent back to Laos. This confirmed fears expressed by Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) in October 2007 with respect to the Thai government’s plans to forcibly repatriate 8,000 Hmong before the end of 2008. The refugees are currently confined to this camp in northern Thailand’s Petchabun province and claim to have fled violence and persecution in Laos.

March 16, 2008

In February, bombings and attacks on villages in parts of West Darfur, Sudan, led to an influx of thousands of refugees into the Birak region of eastern Chad. MSF teams have been providing assistance by distributing essential relief items to the refugees and administering nutrient-fortified, ready-to-use foods (RUF) to prevent and treat malnutrition. As a new wave of refugees arrives in Birak from the Jebel Moon region in Darfur, MSF is distributing an additional round of relief items, setting up mobile medical clinics, and organizing a measles vaccination campaign alongside another distribution of RUF.

March 13, 2008

A car belonging to the international medical humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) was attacked on March 12 near the town of Balcad in Somalia. At 1 p.m. local time, several armed men opened fire on the vehicle, seriously wounding one of the MSF staff members, a security guard, who was taken to hospital where he is now recovering from a femur fracture. Three other employees were slightly injured in the incident.

March 11, 2008

Despite a ceasefire agreement signed in January by the government of the Democratic Republic of Congo and armed groups, insecurity persists in North Kivu province. The population is subject to violent attacks and must flee, often multiple times. Romain Gitenet, MSF head of mission in DRC, provides an update on MSF’s work there.

March 09, 2008

The situation in the Gaza Strip has been calmer since last week's fighting between Palestinian armed groups and Israeli forces. At the height of the violence, MSF managed to make donations to health facilities and continued to assess medical needs. Teams are prepared to treat new patients in the coming days.

March 02, 2008

The MSF team has reopened its clinic in Gaza City in order to treat wounded people and to support hospitals overloaded by a large influx of patients due to the Israeli incursion in the north of Gaza strip. MSF has also made donations of medical items and essential drugs to some hospitals in the area.

February 27, 2008

Even as a political settlement was reached in Kenya, MSF teams continued to provide medical care in Nairobi, Nyanza, Rift Valley, and Western provinces. Many areas of Kenya remain tense: in Nairobi, MSF has adapted their long-running HIV/AIDS projects to also provide care for victims of violence; in western Kenya, MSF is responding to people’s needs by working in internally displaced persons’ (IDP) camps and supporting health centers and hospitals. Meanwhile, mobile medical teams travel to rural areas every week to provide care to the many hundreds of Kenyans who are trapped there with little or no aid.

February 22, 2008

Stuck in a highly volatile security context, Sudanese refugees who have recently arrived just over the border in Birak, Chad, are in an extremely worrying situation. With ongoing combat a few kilometers away from their settlement, the lives of the refugees and those who remain in targeted areas in Darfur, are still at risk.

February 14, 2008

While many people have already returned to N'Djamena, further aid is reaching the thousands of refugees that still remain in the border town of Kousseri, in Cameroon. This week, MSF carried out a measles vaccination campaign and distributed relief items to thousands of people at two sites. MSF continues to offer free medical care to refugees and two surgical teams are still working in Kousseri and N'Djamena.

February 12, 2008

Cholera cases are still on the rise in Katanga province, in the southwest of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Since late September, a total of 4,029 cases have been reported by MSF emergency teams in the cities of Lubumbashi and Likasi. At least 97 patients have died.

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