UNHCR and Korean Cooperation Agency sign financial agreement

UNHCR and Korean Cooperation Agency sign financial agreement

A financial agreement was signed this Wednesday between the Korean international cooperation agency KOICA and the United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR) in Mauritania, to deal with the arrivals of refugees who are increasing since the resumption of conflicts in the northern Mali.

2 mins

With our correspondent in Nouakchott, Léa Breuil

The agreement concluded between KOICA and the UNHCR provides for a budget of $4 million over three years in the Hodh Chargui region. Among the objectives: to strengthen the integration of Malian refugees inside and outside the camp and to further support the local populations who welcome them.

This mission will be carried out through, for example, the implementation of ecological income-generating activities and support for community initiatives for local development.

Many good practices were observed in this project, such as the existence of a large group of volunteers made up of refugees who fight against bushfires », Explains Hyewon Cho, representative of the Korean agency KOICA. And to add: “ This type of activity and this type of volunteering is a good example of an activity to promote ecological livelihoods. »

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These initiatives are essential for Elizabeth Eyster, UNHCR representative in Mauritania, in order to preserve social cohesion between refugees and host populations in the long term. According to the latest estimates, more than 107,000 Malian refugees are currently hosted in the Mbera camp and at least 80,000 outside the camp. In January alone, the UNHCR counted 14,000 arrivals outside the camp.

We must be vigilant to avoid conflicts », comments Ms Eyster, aware that the region “ poor » also faces a “ worrying climate situation ». “ Refugees should not be a burden on host populations. We will implement projects to minimize dependence on humanitarian aid with the perspective that refugees are contributors », she explains.

Finally, in the long term, UNHCR has certain priorities, including empowering communities and improving access to basic services.

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