Global Protection Update: Forced Returns and Relocations, April 2024


The first quarter of 2024 was a particularly dire moment for so many civilians caught up in renewed conflicts, political instability and new large-scale emergencies. The scale, complexity and urgency of several ongoing humanitarian crises is surpassing the capacity of protection actors to respond to the needs of affected populations.

This Global Protection Update covers the first quarter of 2024, providing a country-by-country news update, exploring emerging protection trends and tracking the risks faced by vulnerable populations in crises.

The update places a thematic focus on ensuring the protection of IDPs in contexts of forced returns, relocations and camp closures. Protection Cluster operations across conflict and disaster contexts have observed an increasing number of forced return and relocation of internally displaced communities. In part, this trend is driven by closures of IDP camps. Protection from forced returns and relocation is essential for internally displaced persons. Under no circumstances should IDPs be encouraged or compelled to return or relocate to areas where their life, safety, liberty, or health would be at risk. All activities should ensure that displaced persons can enjoy physical, legal, and material security without discrimination.