Numbers of Burundian refugees return from Tanzania hardly to meet target: official

Source: Xinhua| 2018-09-26 06:24:25|Editor: Shi Yinglun
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BUJUMBURA, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) -- It will be hard to reach the target of 72,000 Burundian refugees being repatriated from Tanzania by Dec. 2018 as set by a tripartite meeting on voluntary repatriation in March, a Burundian official said Tuesday.

During the March tripartite meeting attended by officials from Burundi, Tanzania and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the three parties agreed to repatriate at least 2,000 Burundian refugees per week and the target was to have repatriated some 72,000 refugees by the end of this year, assistant to the Burundian interior minister Therence Ntahiraja told Burundi-based Radio Isanganiro.

Depending on the progress that some 37,800 have been repatriated by the end of September, it will be hard to reach the target, said Ntahiraja.

According to him, UNHCR has failed to repatriate 2,000 refugees per week due to the insufficiency of logistical equipment.

UNHCR sometimes repatriated between 1,000 and 2,000 refugees or even less than 1,000 refugees per week, he said.

There are 383,283 Burundian refugees haven't returned to Burundi, over half of them are living in Tanzania, according to figures from UNHCR, last updated on Aug. 31, 2018.

Most of the Burundian refugees fled the central African country since April 2015, when it plunged into a crisis after Burundian President Pierre Nkurunziza decided to run his controversial third term.