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Drought and Insecurity Force Somali Refugees into Kenya


The drought in east Africa, along with insecurity, has caused more than 17 hundred Somali refugees to move into Kenya. Emmanuel Nyabera is a spokesman for the UN refugee agency, the UNHCR. From Nairobi, he spoke to English to Africa reporter Joe De Capua.

“Since January, up to the end of March, beginning of April, we have had more than 1,780 people claiming to have come from Somalia. And they’ve come to our camp, the Dadaab refugee camp in the northeastern part of Kenya, seeking asylum, seeking assistance. So this is a big number and we’ve also seen a number of Kenyans, who come from the northeastern part of Kenya, move closer to the camp so they can also benefit from assistances, especially water,” he says.

Asked whether he thought these movements would continue, Nyabera says, “As long as we continue facing drought and also conflict in Somalia then our concern is that this will continue. And most of them are coming and they’re saying they need assistance. And they’re saying they’re not ready to go back to Somalia because of problems related to drought and also conflict. So, our concern is that we are going to have more people coming in. And already we are very stretched when it comes to resources.”

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