|Kenyan refugees won’t be forced back|
|Tuesday, 12th February, 2008||
|By Anne Mugisa
THE Government and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) will not allow the Kenyan refugees to be forced back to their country, disaster preparedness minister Musa Ecweru has said.
Speaking a day after a Kenyan minister was allowed into Uganda to convince the refugees to return home, Ecweru said: “They should persuade the refugees that they will be safe back home, then the Government and UNHCR will facilitate their return home.”
Ecweru, who addressed journalists with the UNHCR representative, Stefano Severe, said the refugees would be relocated to gazetted settlements in Kiryandongo in Masindi and Nakivale in Mbarara. About 12,000 Kenyan refugees are in temporary camps in Tororo, Manafwa and Busia districts.
Severe commended Uganda for its liberal refugee policy. He said there were about 237,000 refugees in Uganda and 160,000 of them are from South Sudan.
About 25,000 Sudanese refugees have been repatriated home since the exercise began in May 2006.