Risks rise at Horn of Africa refugee camps

Nairobi (Keydmedia) - The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has warned about increasing insecurity in and around camps hosting hundreds of thousands of Somali refugees in the Horn of Africa.
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UNHCR says the situation is particularly worrying, complex and tenuous in the Dadaab refugee camps in northern Kenya where the threat of improvised explosive devices, kidnappings, vehicle hijackings and banditry remains high.

"In addition to killings of police officers and kidnappings of aid workers, we are also seeing targeting of refugees," UNHCR Spokesperson Andrej Mahecic told the press in Geneva.

Just a few weeks ago, two refugee leaders who had volunteered to help maintain peace and safety in the camps were murdered in Dadaab’s Hagadera and Ifo camps respectively.

The unsafe condition has seriously curbed the ability of aid agencies to deliver services, as humanitarian workers now have to contend with restrictions on movement from Dadaab town to the camps.

Such unrest also occurred in another major host country of Somali refugees—Ethiopia.

According to UNHCR, on Wednesday, a security incident took place near the Dollo Ado camps, where three armed men in civilian clothing attempted to stop a vehicle belonging to an international NGO.

The vehicle was being fired upon by the gunmen while passing by.

Fortunately, no one on board the vehicle was hurt.

Currently, there are more than 955,000 Somalis live as refugees in countries neighbouring Somalia, primarily in Kenya, Yemen, and Ethiopia.

Source: Xinheu