UN halts Ivorian refugee returns

2013-03-28 19:33
(Gaël Turine, MSF)

(Gaël Turine, MSF)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Monrovia - The United Nations refugee agency in Liberia said on Thursday it has halted its voluntary repatriation programme for displaced Ivorians because of growing violence at the countries' volatile border.

Liberia hosts more than 62 000 Ivorian refugees, mostly in camps, who fled following Ivory Coast's civil unrest in April 2011 that led to the ousting of president Laurent Gbagbo.

The UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said in a statement that a convoy of 400 refugees en route to the border was forced to return following reports of a "security incident", a few days ago.

"The UNHCR has expressed concern over recent security incidents in [Ivory Coast] that have marred the facilitated voluntary repatriation of Ivorian refugees in Liberia," it said.

Several Liberian army units were deployed to border posts between the two countries last year to counter armed gangs raiding the Ivorian side from Liberia.

The groups have targeted western Ivory Coast since the end of the country's 2010-2011 crisis, which left 3 000 dead in the wake of a disputed presidential election.

Abidjan has accused exiles loyal to Gbagbo of being behind the raids, claims they deny.

In an ambush in southwest Ivory Coast in June last year, 18 people died, including seven United Nations peacekeepers from Niger.

Over the past three months the UNHCR and the Liberia Refugee Repatriation and Resettlement Commission have organised the voluntary return of more than 5 500 Ivorians and expect to have repatriated 16 000 by the end of the year.

"Last year the repatriation exercise was interrupted following the killing of seven UN peacekeepers in June on the Ivorian side of the border," the statement quoted Unicef's Liberia representative as saying.

"For this year, security concerns have once again interrupted the repatriation exercise. This is a serious setback."

- SAPA
Read more on:    unhcr  |  unicef  |  laurent gbagbo  |  liberia  |  ivory coast  |  west africa
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24

 
/News

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Valentine’s Day gifts – 14 Feb!

Gifts to spoil him and her. While stocks last. Shop now!

Games on Sale!

Save up to 60% on selected games. While stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off All Textbooks

Save up to 30% off an extensive range of prescribed textbooks for all major universities and FET colleges. Shop Now!

Save up to 40% on outdoor accessories!

Tents, sleeping, day packs and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

30% off fragrances

Get 30% off fragrances for him and her. While stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Something may come back into focus. You may get a second chance to say what needs to be said. The important focus today is to not...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.