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At last week's London Conference on Somalia, Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki called for a “firm and durable” solution to the refugee crisis. This includes the return of Somali refugees from the camps in Kenya’s northeast back over the border into Somalia.
"Only God knows how we are surviving," said 16-year-old Ahmed, as he looked up at me from his creaky hospital bed.
We met Ahmed on the outskirts of the northern Lebanese city of Tripoli, in a hospital set up to treat wounded Syrian refugees. He is one of the many hundreds of Syrians who fled to Tripoli to escape the ongoing violence across the border.
A quick and comprehensive resolution to Panama’s most acute refugee crisis is imminently achievable. Unfortunately, that’s been the case for over a decade.
More than ten years ago, targeted violence drove more than 800 rural Colombians from their homes, and over the border into Panama. Panama allowed these families to remain in the Darien jungle under a Temporary Humanitarian Protection protocol, but did not allow them to work or travel freely throughout the rest of the country.
It’s been quite a month for those of us following the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan. On February 3, the New York Times exposed one of the terrible tragedies of this year’s abnormally harsh winter: the deaths of at least 24 children in Kabul’s IDP settlements. The UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Afghanistan, Michael Keating, was quoted as saying, “I just don’t think the humanitarian story is sufficiently understood here.
This post originally appeared at African Arguments, the blog of the Royal African Society.
Tens of thousands of Somali refugees live in Kenya’s cities, but they are often forgotten amid the region’s myriad refugee problems. So on our recent visit to Kenya, we asked how these people have been affected by the (presumed) Al Shabab attacks on Kenyan refugee camps further afield.
My colleague, Melanie Teff, and I are just back from the main staff complex of the Dadaab refugee camp in northeastern Kenya. Our RI colleagues last visited the camp and met with refugees in October 2011, amid a major influx of Somalis seeking refuge from famine and conflict.
Before they first took to the streets, the stateless bidoun community in Kuwait thought extensively about how best to claim their rights to identity, education, and health care (among other concerns). They had studied campaigns from other countries and other periods of history.
Inspired by the U.S. civil rights movement led by Martin Luther King, Jr., they decided to take a peaceful and non-confrontational approach.
You're easily fooled upon arrival in Bogotá. You think, "This is it. This is Colombia." At over 9,000 feet above sea level and average temperatures of 68 degrees Fahrenheit, Colombia's capital enjoys an "eternal spring" year round. After a few days in the hospitable climate of Bogotá, I couldn't help but think: "I hope the rest of the country is like this."
The next day I found that such is not the case. For two years now, record-breaking rains have produced the worst flooding in 80 years throughout much of the country.
I am listening to the call to morning prayer in Kuwait City. It is beautiful, and one example of the widespread expression of faith in Kuwait. Yet despite the kind and generous gestures of the people I've met here, the bidoun, a stateless population in Kuwait, are afforded no hospitality.
News reports coming out of Burma and the border areas of Thailand detail increases in the number and severity of sexual assaults. We were in the country in late November, and the report we issued called attention to ongoing sexual and gender-based violence – and the complete lack of meaningful action by the Burmese government on this issue.