Algeria: Sahrawis Exiled in the Desert; Algeria, Tindouf, April 2015

  • The refugees rely on food assistance provided by aid agencies.
  • Some of the most vulnerable refugees receive fresh eggs.
  • There are high rates of anaemia, diabetes and hypertension among the refugees.
  • Pots like these are used to keep food fresh for longer.
  • Ensuring families get access to water is a key priority.
  • EU funding is used to install sanitation facilities.
  • Mechanical wokshops ensure trucks deliver water and non-food items.
  • Young people are frustrated about the political stalement and lack of opportunities.
  • The camps were intended to be a temporary solution, but a third generation has been born and raised

It’s hard enough being a refugee anywhere in the world, having to uproot and leave your home, friends and family behind. But can you imagine being a refugee for nearly 40 years? That’s the situation facing Sahrawi refugees – one of the oldest refugee groups in the world – who began fleeing their homes in 1975, when conflict in Western Sahara sharply escalated. The refugees, living in five camps in Tindouf, south-western Algeria, refuse to return home until there’s a political resolution to the crisis – including a referendum on self-determination. In the meantime, refugees depend heavily on international aid provided by donors including the European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection department (ECHO) having little access to other resources.

Created by Ruth-Anne Hurst on 2016-04-14


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