In Tanzania, UN refugee chief praises ‘regional peacemaker’ role, and efforts to welcome neighbours on the run

© UNHCR/Georgina Goodwin UN Refugees Chief Filippo Grandi talks with a woman and her baby from the refugee community during his official visit to Nyarugusu Refugee Camp in Kasulu District, western Tanzania, February 7, 2019.

This article is brought to you in association with the United Nations.


The head of the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has praised Tanzania for the long-standing welcome it offers hundreds of thousands of refugees, describing it as a “regional peacemaker” in an unstable part of Africa, that deserves more international support.

Speaking at the end of a four-day visit to the east African nation, Filippo Grandi called for greater investment in the north-west region of Tanzania, where some 300,000 refugees are being hosted, and pledged to mobilize more support for humanitarian efforts, local community development, improved camp security, and environmental projects.

In a meeting with Tanzanian President John Joseph Magafuli, Mr. Grandi commended the country’s tradition of welcoming refugees fleeing conflict and persecution in neighbouring countries, and said Tanzania deserved greater international recognition for its role as “one of the most important refugee asylum countries in Africa.”

However, Mr. Grandi also impressed upon government officials the importance of not forcing refugees to go back to their countries of origin. Over 57,000 refugees from Burundi have been assisted to voluntarily leave Tanzania and return home in the last two years, but some refugees report their decision was partly based on perceived pressure from the authorities, restrictions on freedom of movement and a lack of access to jobs, so they can support themselves.

“It is important that nobody is forced back, that repatriation remains a voluntary exercise,” Mr. Grandi told reporters, after visiting the Nyarugusu Refugee Camp in Kasulu, home to around 15,000 Burundian and Congolese refugees. He noted that some refugees are volunteering to go back to their countries of origin, despite uncertain conditions in both the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Burundi, and said that sustainable refugee return happens when refugees feel confident that it is safe to go back, and receive the necessary support to do so. Nearly three-quarters of Tanzania’s refugees are from Burundi, and the other 26 per cent are from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, or DRC.

Mr. Grandi praised Tanzania for supporting the UN’s Global Compact on Refugees, which calls for greater international support to host countries and more refugee self-reliance which, he said, stimulates local economies and provides opportunities for host communities.

the sting Milestone

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Prepare for a ‘new normal’ as lockdown restrictions ease: Monday’s COVID-19 WHO briefing

Rare Disease Day: a new EU platform to support better diagnosis and treatment

Seaweed, enzymes and compostable cups: Can ‘Big Food’ take on plastic and win?

States with power and influence to end suffering of Yemenis must take action ‘immediately’ – UN rights chief

ECB’s €1.14 trillion again unifies Eurozone; Germany approves sovereign debt risks to be pooled

The Indian case: health policies need to keep pace with public health literacy

EU Youth Conference in Amsterdam: enabling young people to engage in a diverse, connected and inclusive Europe

What washing your hands can teach you about global change

UN Convention that promotes mediation to resolve trade disputes moves closer to entry into force

UNICEF urges all countries to provide ‘Super Dads’ with paid leave

Appreciation of euro to continue

Myanmar: Departing UN rights expert still hopeful for democratic transition

The UN’s unyielding effort to tackle sexual abuse and exploitation: our quarterly update

This man is sleeping out in the Davos cold to make a point about homelessness

MEPs to prioritise environment and climate action in next long-term budget

‘Air bridge’ vaccination operation begins for Ebola-hit communities in DR Congo

ECB’s Draghi favours a cheaper euro to serve all Eurozone countries

UN, Somali Government seek $80 million in immediate relief for flood-affected populations

3 reasons why AI won’t replace human translators… yet

More effort needed to improve equity in education

One in three Venezuelans not getting enough to eat, UN study finds

The Great Reset needs great leaders to help the most vulnerable

The dark side of Diwali, festival of lights

Security Council extends mandate of UN Interim Force in Lebanon for a year

Pride in health care during Pride Month: Are we ready for a dignified health care for LGBTQI+ patients?

Eurozone: There is a remedy for regional convergence

Libya: $202 million needed to bring life-saving aid to half a million people hit by humanitarian crisis

4 reasons why women should lead the G7 agenda in 2018

Electronic cigarette – is it really a safer alternative to smoking?

Female leaders warn about the erosion of women’s rights

Microplastics have been found in Rocky Mountain rainwater

Why the answer to a more sustainable future could lie within the platform economy

This is how India can become the next Silicon Valley

The role of junior entrepreneurs as a bridge between academia and business world

Climate change brings a host of other risks for businesses

Ahead of State of the Union the European Youth Forum highlights lack of action on youth employment

30 years of tissue engineering, what has been achieved?

Using the quarantine to your advantage

The glimmers of hope in the latest dire climate report

EU adopts €55 million support package for Syrian refugees and local communities in Jordan and Lebanon to mitigate coronavirus pandemic

The United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union will impact young people’s future the most

Quarantine: A mental health guide for every mood

Bilbao’s city parks offer brain-training games for the elderly

Health Committee MEPs back plans to boost joint assessment of medicines

Recession: the best argument for growth

Study: Trade supports over 36 million jobs across the EU

Italy should boost spending and strengthen cooperation and integration of employment services to help more people into work

‘Highly explosive’ escalation of conflict and displacement across Syria’s Idlib, says top UN official

Companies can help build a more inclusive world. Here’s how

How much more political is the new EU leadership? Does this include personal bend?

Tropical Cyclone Idai affects 1.5 million across Mozambique and Malawi, as UN ramps up response

Constitution of the 9th legislature of the European Parliament

Banking package: Parliament and Council reach an agreement

The European Parliament wants to stay in one place

How technology can help India breathe more easily

European Union supports survivors of sexual violence in conflict

COP21 Business update: Companies urge now for carbon pricing as coal is still a big issue

A multipolar world brings back the national champions

Why is the Strait of Hormuz so important?

The French army is enlisting sci-fi writers to predict the future

More Stings?

Advertising

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s