Rwanda to receive the third batch of 120 refugees from Libya next month

On 24 October 2019 at 12:49

Rwanda will receive the third batch of over 120 refugees from Libya next month joining 189 others settled in Gashora transit camp in Bugesera district, Estern Province, the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has announced.

It was revealed yesterday as the delegation from UNHCR and the Government of Rwanda visited the transit camp where recently evacuated refugees are accommodated.

21 of these refugees hail from Somalia, 153 from Eritrea, 10 from Suda and 5 five from Ethiopia. 79 of them are unaccompanied minors.

Elise Laura Villechalane, the External Relations Officer at the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) Rwanda said that the third batch will jet in Rwanda not later than next month.

“The next batch of over 120 refugees will be arrive in Rwanda next month. We want to conclude the evacuation of all the 500 refugees Rwanda committed to host this year,” she said.

The Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Emergency Management, Olivier Kayumba said preparations to host these refugees are on course.

“Preparations are on good progress. We received the first batch of 66, the second of 123 while others are on the way. We shall host them decently,” he said.

UNHCR Bureau Director for the East, Horn of Africa and Great Lakes Region Ms. Clementine Nkweta-Salami, commended Rwanda’s commitment to host these refugees and giving them basics as they seek durable solution.

Rwanda committed to receiving 500 refugees at the head first of whom a group of 66 African refugees and asylum-seekers from Libya arrived in Rwanda at the end of September 2019 in the first batch aboard the airplane of Buraq Air.

They were all accommodated at Gashora transit camp in Bugesera district which previously hosted thousands of Burundian refugees since 2015 before they were relocated to other sites.

The second batch of 120 refugees was also received few weeks later raising the number to 189.

Rwanda signed agreements to host refugees stranded in Libya on 10th September 2019 with the African Union (AU) and UNHCR.

Rwanda made the commitment to host refugees from Libya in 2017 following revelations that thousands of people from across Africa were stranded in the country after their failure to reach Europe and subjected to slavery.

Following the evacuation of the first batch of refugees to Rwanda, National Commission for Human Rights (NCHR), visited Gashora camp to inspect if refugees’ rights are respected.

The report signed by the Chairperson of NCHR, Mrs. Madeleine Nirere on 4th October 2019 indicated that the refugees are living in accordance with international standards granting the status of refugees having decent accommodations, sanitary infrastructures, enough safe water, tables, chairs, beds, fresh air, mosquito nets, and entertainment playgrounds among other basic needs.

The second batch of 120 refugees was also received few weeks later raising the number to 189.