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UNHCR: Sudan hosts 25% of South Sudan’s refugees

Displaced persons at a water tank in West Darfur, Sudan [Nite Owl/Wikipedia]
Image of at a water tank in a refugee camp in West Darfur, Sudan [Nite Owl/Wikipedia]

United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) says Sudan is currently hosting about a quarter of the South Sudanese refugees in the region, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

In its weekly bulletin OCHA showed that “over 10,000 South Sudanese refugees arrived in Sudan during the first half of April, bringing the number of refugee arrivals from South Sudan to over 95,000 since the beginning of 2017.”

refugees have crossed the border from South Sudan seeking refuge in Sudan since the start of the year

The highest numbers of new arrivals are reported in East Darfur and the White Nile states. The UNHCR initially expected 60,000 South Sudanese refugees to arrive in 2017; however, that figure has already been exceeded in the first three months and is a 32 per cent increase since the end of 2016.

UNHCR anticipates a continuing influx of South Sudanese refugees throughout this year but is concerned about a drop in funding to meet their needs. “Our resources are being stretched at a time when needs are quickly growing,” said UNHCR’s Representative in Sudan, Mohammed Adar.

Read: 70,000 South Sudan refugees escape to Sudan

UNHCR humanitarian requirements for last year was only 18 per cent funded, leaving a shortfall of $128 million in unmet needs. The total displacement from South Sudan into the surrounding region has now reached 1.6 million people out of the country’s total population of some 11 million.

UNHCR says the rate of new displacement is alarming, representing an impossible burden on a region that is economically challenged and fast running short of resources to cope.

South Sudan has been engulfed by war since 2013 after President Salva Kiir accused his rival and former deputy Riak Machar of plotting a coup.

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