News / Africa

Ethiopia Awaits Influx of Refugees from Sudan and South Sudan

Ethiopia Awaits Influx of Refugees from Sudan and South Sudan
Ethiopia Awaits Influx of Refugees from Sudan and South Sudan
Joe DeCapua

Humanitarian agencies are preparing for an influx of refugees into Ethiopia from both Sudan and South Sudan. Civilians, mostly women and children, are fleeing fighting and violence in border areas.

Fighting continues in Sudan’s Blue Nile State between government forces and the rebel SPLA North Sector. While in South Sudan’s Jonglei State, ethnic violence stemming from cattle raids has left hundreds dead.

The U.N. refugee agency or UNHCR is coordinating relief efforts with the International Organization for Migration and the Ethiopian Relief and Rehabilitation Commission.

“There are expectations that a number of people fleeing the fighting will likely arrive in Ethiopia just as we have had cases, particularly between August and September last year when we had quite a number of people coming from Blue Nile State,” said Josiah Oginah, IOM’s chief of mission in Ethiopia.

Getting ready

It is unclear how many refugees will actually arrive in Ethiopia, but humanitarian agencies are planning for as many as 50,000.

“The number cannot be determined. It depends on who actually crosses the border. Sometimes those who cross the border may not necessarily be wanting to come into the refugee camps because some of them are people who also have some relations within the border area. So they may identify some relations that they would like to stay with host communities. So, determining the number is not easy,” he said.

The International Organization for Migration currently has an office in Assosa, in the Benishangul-Gumuz region of Ethiopia. It handled many of the refugees who arrived late last year. However, the new influx is expected further south in the Gambela region.

Local groups have been contracted to shuttle the refugees to three camps: Tongo, Sherkole and Adamazine. All are located far from the border. It’s estimated there are 35,000 refugees from Blue Nile State currently in Ethiopia, most of them in the camps.

The IOM’s Oginah said the new arrivals appear to be fairly healthy overall.

“(The) majority of the people who arrive (a) significant number are women and children. I would say that some of them look tired because of the distances they have covered, but they’re not in any bad health, nutrition conditions at all. They are just basically people who have been semi traumatized by having run away from hostilities. But health wise I think the majority of them are in reasonable shape,” he said.

The IOM saids more funding is needed to help the refugees. It’s appealed for one million dollars. It’s received $300,000 from the UNHCR in response to that appeal.

Meanwhile, in South Sudan’s Jonglei State, a four truck IOM convoy is carrying emergency non-food items to the town of Pibor. The aid includes plastic sheeting, jerry cans, kitchen utensils, blankets and soap. It’s being delivered to about 7,500 people displaced by recent ethnic fighting between the Lou Nuer (LO NUR) and the Murle.

You May Like

Turkey's Controversial Reform Bill Giving Investors Jitters

Homeland security reform bill will give police new powers in search, seizure, detention and arrests, while restricting the rights of suspects, their attorneys More

Audio Slideshow In Kenyan Prison, Good Grades Are Path to Freedom

Some inmates who get high marks could see their sentences commuted to non-custodial status More

'Rumble in the Jungle' Turns 40

'The Champ' knocked Foreman out to regain crown he had lost 7 years earlier when US government accused him of draft-dodging and boxing officials revoked his license More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisiai
X
Henry Ridgwell
October 30, 2014 11:39 PM
Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid