Mindanao has endured a long history of conflict and instability, resulting in the forced displacement of millions of people over the years. As at end of 2020, there are still about 100,000 people who remain displaced since the 2017 Marawi Siege. The precarious situation of internally displaced persons (IDPs) continue to be compromised by the risk of recurring conflicts and natural disasters.
As part of our broad efforts to support a prosperous, stable, and resilient Philippines, Australia works with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to improve living conditions of IDPs, particularly in priority areas within the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) and Eastern Mindanao.
Through our strategic partnership with UNHCR, prepositioned core relief items allow the immediate deployment of assistance to populations affected by disasters and conflicts. We also promote recovery in these areas through the implementation of projects that focus on improving living conditions, while providing locals with opportunities for income and livelihood generation.
Beyond these, Australia supports activities that reinforce the resilience of BARMM institutions and communities by working with relevant ministries to improve their technical capabilities on monitoring and evaluation and information management, as well as advocating for the passage of a regional IDP bill that will mainstream protection across all aspects of humanitarian response.