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UNHCR Asks for Additional $60 Million on Somali Refugees


UNHCR Asks for Additional $60 Million on Somali Refugees

UNHCR Asks for Additional $60 Million on Somali Refugees

The United Nations refugee agency is asking international donors to provide an additional $60 million to help Somali refugees.

The United Nations refugee agency is asking international donors to provide an additional $60 million to help Somali refugees.

In a statement Wednesday, UNHCR deputy chief Alexander Aleinikoff said the crisis is "worsening" and the world needs to prepare for "new and possibly large-scale displacement."

Aleinikoff, who recently visited Somalia and several neighboring countries that currently shelter its refugees, said the situation in Somalia has deteriorated. He said 200,000 Somalis have been forced to leave their homes in 2010, alone.

The U.N. estimates there are 550,000 refugees in Kenya, Yemen, Ethiopia, and Djibouti as well as 1.4 million displaced people within Somalia.

The UNHCR said the extra funding would go towards improving water, shelter, and health facilities in existing camps as well as to build two new ones.

The appeal comes a day after the UNHCR urged governments to relax requirements for asylum-seekers from violence-ravaged central and southern Somalia.

The UNHCR issued new guidelines Tuesday asking countries receiving large numbers of Somalis to grant them protection as a group instead of assessing each case individually.

The agency also says governments should grant temporary asylum to those who are refused refugee status.

Somalia has not had a stable central government since 1991.

Insurgent groups are fighting to impose a strict form of Islamic law control in much of the capital, Mogadishu, along with large parts of the south and central regions.

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