SOMALIA: UNHCR doing everything possible to assist Somalis displaced by conflict and drought

Published: June 20, 2011

2.4 million Somalis, equivalent to one in every three citizens, are in crisis due to conflict and drought. Of the estimated 1.4 million internally displaced Somalis, over 1 million are located in areas where access is extremely limited or denied, UNHCR Somalia Representative Bruno Geddo told journalists at a media briefing in Nairobi to mark World Refugee Day.
“The current situation in Somalia is difficult but it is still possible for UNHCR and other agencies to deliver humanitarian assistance to those in need. As humanitarian access opens up – particularly in areas along the Kenyan border – UNHCR will be quick to react and deliver aid in the form of Non Food Items – blankets, plastic sheeting for shelter, jerrycans, buckets and basic cooking items),” he said. So far this year, UNHCR has distributed 3,000 NFI kits to people displaced by fighting in Belet Hawo, across the broder from Mandera while another 10,000 kits were distributed in Mogadishu through a partner agency. An additional 3,000 NFI kits are on their way to Dobley, across the border from Liboi and 1,500 will soon be sent to El Wak, across the border from El Wak, Kenya.
“UNCHR is doing all it can to provide humanitarian assistance inside Somalia to those fleeing conflict and drought, in the face of extremely limited access,” Mr Geddo told journalists. Despite the efforts of the humanitarian community to provide relief inside Somalia, the situation remains so difficult that, so far this year, over 50,000 Somali refugees have been registered in Dadaab refugee camp in Kenya’s North Eastern Province, more than double the number registered in the same period last year.
“In this environment where people’s lives are under threat every day, the right of Somalis to seek asylum in Kenya and other neighbouring countries must be upheld,” Geddo said. He concluded by highlighting that displacement due to drought is likely to continue in the coming months as Somalia and the Horn of Africa is experiencing its driest period of weather since 1995. The humanitarian appeal for Somalia will be revised upwards next month in order to respond to the additional needs arising from the drought.
Somalia Displacement Facts and Figures:
Figures released by UNHCR Somalia show that an average of 25,000 people were displaced in Somalia every month since the start of 2010
Since 1 May 2011, over 26,000 people were displaced across Somalia, 15,000 of whom were displaced from Mogadishu
Over 10,000 people on average were displaced each month due to insecurity so far in 2011
Over 12,000 people on average were displaced each month due to drought so far in 2011
20,000 Somali refugees were registered in Dadaab between January and May 2010
46,000 Somali refugees were registered in Dadaab between January and May 2011
This is a 130 per cent increase, year on year
The number of Somali refugees fleeing to Kenya, Ethiopia and Yemen has more than doubled (50,000 for January to March 2011, 23,000 from January to March 2010)
Source: UNHCR

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *