UN refugee agency seeks 488 mln USD to help displaced Somalis

Source: Xinhua| 2017-05-12 21:01:55|Editor: xuxin
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MOGADISHU, May 12 (Xinhua) -- The UN refugee agency said Friday it has revised funding needs for people displaced inside Somalia and for Somali refugees in the East Africa region.

In a statement, the UNHCR said it's seeking some 488 million U.S. dollars to provide continued support to displaced Somalis in 2017.

"The updated funding appeal is combined with our call for continued and sustainable international engagement with the government of Somalia and also refugee hosting countries in the region," UNHCR said.

The update includes an additional requirement of 91 million dollars for Somali refugees in Ethiopia, Kenya, Yemen and those displaced inside Somalia.

The UNHCR appeal also aims to cover needs of some 250,000 most vulnerable among the newly displaced - including those forced to leave Somalia due to drought and continued insecurity.

The UN refugee said it requires resources to address return and reintegration of 50,000 returnees from Kenya and 10,000 from Yemen.

"Insecurity, capacity of government institutions, curtailed humanitarian access, limited livelihood opportunities, lack of basic services, poor infrastructure are some of the key challenges in Somalia," UNHCR said.

It said the current risk of famine with reports of deaths and illnesses caused by drought-related factors is further complicating daily lives of Somalis.

Some 6.2 million people are in need of humanitarian aid inside Somalia, adding that the ongoing drought also increases risk of famine-induced displacement in the region.

According to the UNHCR, since November 2016, more than 683,000 people in Somalia have been internally displaced by drought, including more than 377,000 displaced during the first quarter of 2017.

Over 126,000 of those are in the capital Mogadishu, and some 136,000 to Baidoa in the country's southwest Bay region.

Over 2 million Somalis are currently displaced by conflict, now lasting for more than two decades. Some 1.5 million people are internally displaced in Somalia and nearly 900,000 are refugees in the region, including some 308,700 in Kenya, 255,600 in Yemen, 246,900 in Ethiopia, and 13,200 in Djibouti.