UNHCR and partners in urgent need of funds to help thousands of refugees fleeing to Uganda
This is a synopsis of UNHCR spokesperson Boris Cheshirkov’s remarks at the news conference at the Palais des Nations in Geneva – to whom the quoted content may be ascribed. Thousands of migrants came to Uganda this year fleeing violence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and occasional skirmishes in South Sudan, prompting an urgent request for US$47.8 million from UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and 44 humanitarian partners.
Uganda has compassionately welcomed almost 35,000 refugees since January. A third of them had come in the last three weeks from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, fleeing violent conflict in the provinces of North Kivu and Ituri. As violence in the eastern DRC and South Sudan continues, this appeal will help Uganda prepare to absorb more refugees in the event of further displacement. UNHCR is cooperating with the Ugandan government and humanitarian partners to offer immediate assistance and protection to refugees in border areas and is also working to relocate them as soon as possible to refugee settlements.
Protection, food, shelter, and basic household supplies are in high demand. The money will also go toward critical healthcare supplies, as well as water, sanitation, and hygiene services, all of which are necessary to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other infections. Uganda, which already hosts over 1.5 million refugees – the continent’s largest – is now receiving thousands of new arrivals from South Sudan in West Nile State to the north and the Democratic Republic of Congo in southwestern Uganda. Despite the fact that this surge isn’t making the news, the issues are real and growing.
The Uganda Emergency Appeal aims to support coordinated efforts to respond to an influx of up to 60,000 refugees in Uganda in the first half of 2022, including 45,000 new arrivals between April and June of that year.