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Prime Minister Abdiweli visits Dadab refugee camp

Storyline:National News

rwA delegation led by Prime Minister Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed today reached Dadab refugee camp in northeastern province of Kenya, where more than half a million Somali refugees live.

According to reports, the prime minister and his delegation upon arrival held talks with senior officials from United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) as well as Kenyan officials in the refugee camp. The prime minister had talks with refugee leaders.

Earlier this month, some UNHCR workers and Somali refugee leaders in Dadab camp traveled to the port city of Kismayo to assess the security and socio-economic situation of the city as part of the repatriation process, where the premier is expected to hold talks with them.

Prime Minister Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed becomes the highest government official to visit Dadab Refugee Complex, where hundred thousands of Somali refugees have been living  since the collapse of the Somali central government in  1991.

The governments of Kenya ,Somalia, and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) signed a Tripartite Agreement outlining procedures and legalities for the voluntary repatriation of hundreds of thousands of Somali refugees who have been living in Kenya for up to 22 years.

Somali government representatives have several times withdrawn from negotiations on repatriation between Kenya and the UNHCR, citing human rights abuses against Somali refugees living in urban centers.

Since the launch of Kenya’s incursion into Somalia 2011, Dadaab has experienced a sharp rise in attacks by Al-Shabab sympathizers targeting Kenyan police and aid workers with gunfire, explosive devices and abductions. The rising insecurity combined with funding shortages have made relief efforts in the camps severely scaled back.