News / Africa

Security Lapses Threaten Kenya's Dadaab Refugee Complex

Refugees stand outside their tent at the Ifo Extension refugee camp in Dadaab, Kenya, October 19, 2011.
Refugees stand outside their tent at the Ifo Extension refugee camp in Dadaab, Kenya, October 19, 2011.
Lisa Schlein

The United Nations refugee agency says insecurity continues to affect aid efforts in Kenya's Dadaab refugee complex, more than a month after the kidnapping of three aid workers. It says heavy rains and the risk of waterborne diseases are worsening conditions in the camps.

The U.N. refugee agency reports nearly 100 additional Kenyan police have been deployed in the Dadaab camps over the last month.  Nevertheless, it says the situation in the Dadaab camps remains unstable. The agency says refugees and aid workers are uneasy because of what it calls security incidents.

UNHCR spokesman Andrei Mahecic said an explosive device was found next to one of the roads in the Dadaab complex last week. The device did not explode and no one was hurt.

“But, there have been other incidents along the border. There have been incidents reported widely also in the Kenyan media of the attacks on the Kenyan authorities and so on," said Mahecic. "So, we are talking about a very volatile situation along the border with the situation in Somalia not getting any better… Certainly the kidnappings that have happened in the camps have impacted on our work. We had to resort to essential services. We would like to resume the full services as soon as possible.”  

Mahecic said discussions are underway on the feasibility of resuming full operations in the Dadaab complex, which houses more than 450,000 Somali refugees. He said the UNHCR welcomes the additional troops in the campsite, as this should allow greater freedom of movement and better security for the aid workers.

The spokesman said the unsafe situation is further complicated by an outbreak of cholera in the camps. He said it is likely that newly-arrived refugees from Somalia have brought the disease with them.

“There are now 60 suspected cholera cases in the camps, including 10 laboratory-confirmed cases and one refugee death. To manage the outbreak, we and partners have set up cholera treatment centers for severe cases. Most cases can be managed through oral rehydration solutions that can be given at home or at health posts. We are working with UNICEF and the Ministry of Health to train health workers in the community-based management of diarrhea so that patients can begin treatment at home,” said Mahecic.

In another complication, Mahecic said rain and flooding are affecting the trucking of water to parts of Dadaab. He said it is feared some refugees are drinking unsafe water from flooded areas, putting them at risk of waterborne diseases.

He also said aid workers are promoting good-hygiene practices among the refugees, especially the use of latrines and hand-washing with soap.


You May Like

This US Epidemic Keeps Getting Worse

One in 4 Americans suffers from this condition More

How to Safeguard Your Mobile Privacy

As the digital world becomes more mobile, so too do concerns about eroding privacy and increased hacking More

'Desert Dancer' Chronicles Iranian Underground Dance Troupe

Film by Richard Raymond is based on true story of Afshin Ghaffarian and his friends 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.
Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thoughti
X
George Putic
May 26, 2015 9:26 PM
Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video US-led Coalition Gives Some Weapons to Iraqi Troops

In a video released Tuesday from the Iraqi Ministry of Defense, Iraqi forces and U.S.-led coalition troops survey a cache of weapons supplied to help Iraq liberate Mosul from Islamic State group. According to a statement provided with the video, the ministry and the U.S.-led coaltion troops have started ''supplying the 16th army division with medium and light weapons in preparation to liberate Mosul and nearby areas from Da'esh (Arabic acronym for Islamic State group).''
Video

Video Amnesty International: 'Overwhelming Evidence' of War Crimes in Ukraine

Human rights group Amnesty International says there is overwhelming evidence of ongoing war crimes in Ukraine, despite a tentative cease-fire with pro-Russian rebels. Researchers interviewed more than 30 prisoners from both sides of the conflict and all but one said they were tortured. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Washington Parade Honors Those Killed Serving in US Military

Every year, on the last Monday in the month of May, millions of Americans honor the memories of those killed while serving in the armed forces. Memorial Day is a tradition that dates back to the 19th Century. While many people celebrate the federal holiday with a barbecue and a day off from work, for those who’ve served in the military, it’s a special day to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice. Arash Arabasadi reports for VOA from Washington.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.
Video

Video On Film: How Dance Defies Iran's Political Oppression

'Desert Dancer' by filmmaker Richard Raymond is based on the true story of a group of young Iranians, who form an underground dance troupe in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the latest in a genre of films that focus on dance as a form of freedom of expression against political oppression and social injustice. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Turkey's Ruling Party Trying to Lure Voters in Opposition Stronghold

Turkey’s AK (Justice and Development) Party is seeking a fourth successive general election victory, with the goal of securing two-thirds of the seats in Parliament to rewrite the constitution and change the country's parliamentary system into a presidential one. To achieve that, the party will need to win seats in opposition strongholds like the western city of Izmir. Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.

VOA Blogs