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States to agree on best way to repatriate Somalia refugees

Sunday, June 09, 2013

Plans to repatriate Somali refugees to their country have started.

 President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Somalia counterpart Hassan Sheikh Mohamud said the two countries have agreed on the action. Speaking at the end of a two-day retreat at the Sagana State Lodge in Nyeri, the two presidents said a conference set for August in Nairobi would finalise the issue.

The Heads of State said they had formed a taskforce to prepare for the August conference that would address the issue of refugees.

They said the conference would work out modalities for early repatriation of the resettlement of the refugees. Speaking to journalists after the meeting, Uhuru said the presence of refugees had created a security concern in the country.

Hundreds of refugees

“I talked to my colleague on the position of my government regarding the disproportionate burden we continue to shoulder in hosting hundreds of refugees,” said Uhuru.

He said the presence of refugees in the country had a direct bearing on economic, social and security front and also environmental degradation. The President said he hoped the August conference would provide a good platform to address the matter conclusively.

“We call upon the international community to support regional efforts to create conditions that are conducive including means of livelihood for the refugees in their homeland,” he said.

Uhuru said the discussions also touched on the threats and violent attacks carried out by Al-Shabaab targeting innocent people. President Mohamud supported Uhuru’s sentiments, saying the earlier the issue of refugees was addressed the better.

“We laud Kenyans for the sacrifices they have made in stabilising Somalia. They have hosted hundreds of our people and it is time now we started rebuilding our nation,” said the Somalia President.


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