Press Review 29 February

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Tags: Europe forced migration;refugees; asylum seekers;development;xenophobia south

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South Africa: PE Refugee Centre Remains Closed in Defiance of Court Order

allAfrica, 19 February 2016

The Port Elizabeth Refugee Reception Centre is still closed to new applicants despite a recent court ruling ordering the Department of Home affairs to open the offices by 9 February. Last year, the Supreme Court of Appeal ruled in favour of the Somali Association of South Africa, the Project for Conflict Resolution and Development (PCRD), and Lawyers for Human Rights, who had petitioned Home Affairs to reopen the centre. These organisations dragged the department to court after it unilaterally shut down the office in 2011.

Amnesty International slams SA over xenophobic attacks, Bashir

News24, 24 February 2016

South Africa faced criticism from Amnesty International over last year’s xenophobic attacks, the way government dealt with Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, different scandals in state institutions, and excessive use of force by police.

SAHRC finalises Zwelithini xenophobia probe

News24, 24 February 2016

THE SA Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) is finalising its investigation into Kind Goodwill Zwelithini’s alleged xenophobic comments. The commission looked into complaints lodged against Zwelithini following his comments at a moral regeneration event in Pongola, northern KwaZulu-Natal, in March 2015, SAHRC spokesperson Isaac Mangena said last Wednesday. Zwelithini allegedly said that foreign nationals had to leave SA and return to their home countries. A spate of xenophobic attacks erupted around Durban in April, before spreading to Johannesburg.

Zulu King to focus on eradicating xenophobia

eNCA, 24 February 2016

The Zulu king wants to work with government to stamp out xenophobia in Kwazulu-Natal. King Goodwill Zwelithini says eradicating violence is his top priority. The king became the subject of a Human Rights Commission inquiry last year after he was accused of fuelling attacks on foreign nationals. He denied having ordered the killing of hundreds of migrants, but still wants to meet with the commission to discuss its recommendations. The KZN government has welcomed the King’s invitation to participate in restoring peace in the province.


Food crisis hits Malawi’s refugees

Mail & Guardian, 12 February 2016

Malnutrition is stalking Malawi’s only refugee camp, Dzaleka, after rations were curtailed following funding cutbacks by the international donor community. The United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) Southern Africa spokesperson, Tina Ghelli, said a humanitarian disaster is looming for the 24 000 refugees at the camp, which is about 45km from Lilongwe.

Central African Republic: Thousands of Refugees Vote in Second Round of CAR Presidential Election

allAfrica, 15 February 2016

Thousands of refugees took part at the weekend in the second round of Central African Republic’s landmark presidential election, which could usher in a new era of peace and reconciliation after years of violence, suffering and forced displacement, and lead to their return home. Reports from UNHCR staff involved in election facilitation in Cameroon, Chad and Republic of Congo said many of the Central African Republic refugees eligible to vote in those three countries cast their ballots on Sunday.

East Africa: Refugee Camps Over Crowded As More Burundians Arrive

allAfrica, 16 February 2016

Tanzania has received 129,210 refugees from Burundi between April last year and February 10, this year, bringing the number of immigrants to 191,436 in all camps in the country. This was revealed by the Ministry of Home Affairs, Spokesperson Mr Isaac Nantanga during a press conference held in Dar es Salaam.

Unrest in Mozambique leads refugees to seek safety in Malawi

Times Live, 18 February 2016

In the village of Kapise, just 100km south of the Malawian capital, Lilongwe, over 5 800 people from more than 1000 families have settled in a camp that initially held just 150 families. The Mozambicans, most of whom have arrived from the Tete province, are alleged to have fled fighting between government forces and the country’s opposition, Renamo.  Humanitarian organisation Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has a permanent presence in the region, providing healthcare services and supporting the ministry of health in seeing to those in need. MSF Field Co-ordinator Whitney Ward spoke on the harsh living conditions faced within the camps, saying she had never seen such levels of overcrowding.

Southern Africa: Namibian Refugees Take Botswana Govt to Court

allAfrica, 25 February 2016

More than 700 Namibians living at Dukwe Refugee Camp in Botswana, who filed an urgent application on December 31 last year seeking a restraining order to stop the Botswana government from implementing the cessation clause, will soon return to the Lobatse High Court. The two parties are going to court following the Botswana government’s failure to invoke the cessation clause of December 31, 2015 in respect of Namibian refugees living in Dukwe Refugee Camp. The calling into motion of the cessation clause means the refugee status accorded to Namibian refugees in that country would have ceased to be in effect as from December 31, 2015.

Desperate Malawians flock to SA

Mail & Guardian, 26 February

Malawian immigrants come in the hope of finding jobs – but if they don’t have the proper papers, they face arrest, detention and repatriation. More than 1 000 illegal Malawian immigrants are currently being held at the Lindela Repatriation Centre, South Africa’s only detention centre for undocumented migrants, and their numbers are increasing in what is seen as a reflection of deepening economic hardship in their home country.


Somali refugee finds safety in Calgary after searching for a home in 3 countries

CBC news, 14 February 2016

The recent arrival of Syrian refugees in Calgary represents the latest wave of people fleeing danger in search of a better life. With #yycRefugee, we feature some of the people who have made that journey in the past. They now call Calgary home. Ahmed Abdi recalls the talk around town that day back in 1992. Ahmed was 12 years old and living with his family in Garbahare, a small city in Somalia, when he heard the rumours that government forces would soon clash with rebels.

Africa: With Rising Numbers of Child Deaths At Sea, UN Urges More Protection for Refugees and Migrants

allAfrica, 19 February 2016

Two children have drowned every day on average since September 2015 as their families try to cross the eastern Mediterranean, and the number is growing, three United Nations humanitarian agencies said today, calling for enhancing the safety of those escaping conflict and despair. In a joint statement, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) warned that since this past September, when the tragic death of toddler Aylan Kurdi captured the world’s attention, more than 340 children – many of them babies and toddlers – have drowned in the eastern Mediterranean. The total number may be even greater become some bodies have been lost at sea.

Germany wants North African states to take back more migrants

News24, 28 February 2016

Germany wants North African countries to speed up repatriations of rejected asylum seekers, its interior minister said ahead of a visit from Sunday to the region. Thomas de Maiziere, who is to visit Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia, said many applicants lacked travel documents or gave false names and other personal details, making it more difficult to send them back to their countries of origin. Modern technology such as biometric identity papers could help, he told AFP, adding that “we could imagine offering our support” in the area.



Tags: Europe    forced migration;refugees; asylum seekers;development;xenophobia    south   

Categorised in: Press Review