Iivula-Ithana calls on the international community to aid refuge

06 Oct 2014 19:00pm
WINDHOEK, 06 OCT (NAMPA) - The international community tends to pay attention to conflict and crisis only when it becomes morally unbearable and when humanitarian intervention is unavoidable.
This was said by the Minister of Home Affairs and Immigration, Pendukeni Iivula-Ithana during the 65th Annual Session of the Executive Committee of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Geneva, Switzerland from 29 September to 03 October 2014
“Human suffering, violations of human rights and the loss of human lives would decrease if there were efforts to intervene in the crisis much sooner and without military means,” she said.
The minister further said that although many African countries, including Namibia, have long been a generous host to refugees from across the Southern African Development Community (SADC), the task of providing protection and assistance to refugees places an additional burden on the economies and developmental efforts of these host countries.
“I, therefore, would like to urge the international community not to leave the concerned countries alone in the task of meeting the humanitarian emergency caused by the arrival of sometimes great numbers of refugees, but to continue and even increase its support and assistance,” she pleaded.
Meanwhile, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon during the same meeting also called on the world to show compassion to refugees and displaced person.
The UNHCR Session includes two very important meetings – one discussing the “High Level Segment on Enhancing International Cooperation, Solidarity, Local Capacities” and the other being the “Humanitarian Action for Refugees in Africa”.
The segment was organised by António Guterres, 10th UN High Commissioner for Refugees, to pay particular attention to the refugee situation in Africa after realising that conflict elsewhere in the world attract more attention and resources than in Africa, while the continent hosts a third of the about 51 million refugees in the world.