A refugee from Darfur, without news about his wife and children

Bakar, father of two children, is a refugee from Darfur, Sudan. In 2005, his native village was attacked by armed horsemen. His family had to flee their house without delay. He succeeded in bringing to safety his wife and daughter of three, but during the attack he had lost out of sight his oldest daughter. Did eight year old Amina die or had she been able to flee too?

In 2007, war came back to the doorstep. Armed military men attacked Bakar’s new hideout and this time he lost everybody: his wife Raisa and his youngest daughter Hanadi were both unaccounted for. He didn’t know their fate and was forced himself to leave his country of origin. After a long and dangerous journey, he eventually arrived in Europe. He asked asylum in Belgium and immediately sought help to locate his loved ones.

The International Committee of the Red Cross was contacted in the process. Tracing delegates tried to find a trace of Bakar’s relatives in the family’s home village. In a neighbouring settlement they managed to speak to a fellow clan member, who knew where the sought persons went to. Eventually, the family was located in a UNHCR refugee camp, in the eastern part of neighbouring Chad.

Bakar’s oldest daughter managed to reach the camp just across the border with Chad, accompanied by her grandparents. In the meantime, Bakar’s wife and youngest daughter also arrived in the camp. The Tracing Service notified Bakar at once. After three years he could finally talk again by phone with his wife and two children and hear their voices far away. A moment of intense joy!