US welcomes Sudan’s ‘improved steps’ to assist refugees

posted in: Africa

Photo: genderacrossborders

PANA

Washington, US- The United States says it welcomes Sudan’s decision to issue work permits to some 30,000 refugees in eastern Sudan.

A press statement issued by US Department of State received by PANA on Saturday noted that the issuance of work permits was a major step towards fostering greater self-reliance among the refugees Sudan had hosted for many decades.

Sudan currently hosts more than 125,000 refugees from Eritrea and Chad, of whom 80,000 are Eritreans in protracted situations, having arrived in Sudan during the early years of Eritrea’s war of independence.

The statement said an average of 400 to 600 Eritreans continued to arrive in Sudan each month, fleeing political repression, indefinite military conscription and poor economic conditions in their country.

“Over the past three years, a number of the new arrivals have been or become victims of kidnapping, torture, and human trafficking.”

The statement said in 2013, the Department of State’s Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration contributed more than US$27 million to the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and the International Committee of the Red Cross to assist refugees, internally displaced persons, conflict victims and migrants across Sudan.

It said these funds enabled efforts to seek durable solutions, protect new arrivals and prevent human smuggling and trafficking of vulnerable migrants.