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EU Gives UGX $450 Million Towards DRC Refugees to Uganda :: Uganda Radionetwork
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EU Gives UGX $450 Million Towards DRC Refugees to Uganda

A statement from the EU delegation in Uganda says the money will be available for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies IFRC
31 Jan 2018 14:00
South Suda Refugees. Uganda is now recieving more refugees from DRC than South Sudan
The European Union has announced an over four hundred and fifty million shillings (€100 0000) for response towards the influx of Congolese to Uganda.

A statement from the EU delegation in Uganda says the money will be available for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC)

Over thirteen thousand (13 970) refugees are said to have crossed  from DRC's Ituri and North Kivu provinces to Uganda since early December  2017. The Congolese in Uganda to is estimated at over 242 000 according to the EU statement.

The refugees report that they fled a new cycle of inter-communal violence which saw armed groups killing, looting and torching houses.

Renewed fighting and atrocities in DRC are driving thousands of Congolese from their homes. After the long journey, many of them arrive in the refugee settlement weakened and destitute. EU funding is being released to increase the safe water supply and improve sanitation, hygiene and health services. It is crucial that we provide dignified living conditions and prevent disease outbreaks,” said Isabelle D'Haudt, Head of Office for EU Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid in Kampala.

The EU funding is part of the EU's overall contribution to IFRC's Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) and will allow the Uganda Red Cross Society to assist 6 000 newly arrived Congolese refugees from Djugu in Ituri province.

The majority of these refugees according to the statement are reaching Uganda in rickety fishing boats across Lake Albert before being transferred to Kyangwali Refugee Settlement.

The fleeing Congolese are reportedly unable to pay for the journey across the lake.  The majority (65%) of the refugees are children.

The Statement says for an initial period of 3 months, the Red Cross staff and volunteers will provide assistance in the fields of health, water, sanitation and hygiene.

The support will engage in health outreach, psycho-social support, epidemic prevention and control as well as start  hygiene promotion activities.

Latest reports indicate that between 24th and 29nd January 2018, some 2,059 new refugee arrivals from the Democratic of the Congo (DRC) crossed to Uganda via Kisoro (1,694), Kanungu (144) and Lake Albert (221), bringing the total number of new arrivals since 18th December 2017 to 14,151.

Among them, 9,427 people arrived from North Kivu through Uganda's southwestern borders with the DRC. Another 4,724 fled DRC's Ituri region and entered Uganda across Lake Albert using fishing boats and canoes.

Relief agencies says Gthe rate of arrivals remained as high with a daily average of 343 people. Refugees reported fleeing attacks by Mai-Mai militia in North Kivu and inter-communal violence in Ituri.

A higher number of male adults have arrived from Ituri compared to previous weeks. They reported that they were separated from their families when violence erupted in their villages and crossed to Uganda in search of missing family members.

Since 19th December, UNHCR has relocated 4,724 refugees from Lake Albert's shores to Kagoma reception centre in Kyangwali settlement, Hoima district.

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