UNHCR seeks to ensure safety of migrants and refugees in SA

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The Office of United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees has announced that it is strengthening its response and operational presence in South Africa to ensure the safety of migrants and refugees in the country.

The Agency says at least one 1 500 foreign nationals which include migrants, refugees and asylum-seekers, have been forced to flee their homes.

UNHCR experts on child protection and sexual and gender-based violence will also arrive in the country in the coming days.

UN Spokesperson Stephane Dujarric says, “UNHCR said today it is deeply concerned about the recurring violence against foreign nationals including refugees and asylum seekers in South Africa. The Agency is working closely with the government, other agencies and other partners to ensure the safety of refugees by deploying additional staff, emergency shelters and other supplies, psycho-social care and legal assistance.”

Dujarric says the UNHCR calls on all state authorities to take every possible measure to ensure people’s safety and welfare.

“No effort should be spared to quell the violence and enforce the rule of law. It has also stressed that those responsible of committing criminal acts must be held to account in Court.”