Sunday, January 16, 2022

Sudan Tribune

Plural news and views on Sudan

60 million dollars needed for return of refugees to southern Sudan: UN

KHARTOUM, Jan 7 (AFP) — The UN refugee agency said Friday it will cost 60 million dollars this year alone to return refugees to their homes in war-torn southern Sudan.

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Home beckons for these Sudanese refugees in Uganda.(UNHCR).

The UNHCR estimates that it will need some 60 million dollars for the return and reintegration of Sudanese refugees to southern Sudan this year alone,” the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees said.

The UNHCR expressed its hope that a peace deal to end over 20 years of war in the region, due to be signed on Sunday, would herald the return to the region of more than half a million refugees.

The agency also appealed for money to carry out its work, saying its programme in southern Sudan was dramatically underfunded, having received only barely six million dollars of the around 30 million requested.

“The voluntary return of half a million refugees will be a long process needing a great deal of assistance, particularly in light of the lack of infrastructure and basic services in the south,” the agency said.

“We have started rehabilitating community health centers, schools and water and sanitation facilities in areas where refugees may return to increase the communities’ capacity to cope with and re-integrate returning refugees,” it said.

Around half the refugees from southern Sudan are in Uganda, the agency said, with most of the rest in Ethiopia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, the Central African Republic and Egypt.

The Sudan war erupted in 1983 when rebels in the south rose up against Khartoum to end Arab and Muslim domination and marginalisation of the black, animist and Christian south.

The war and its effects have killed at least 1.5 million people and displaced four million others.