UNHCR: Urgent aid needed to prevent deepening Sahel crisis

UNHCR: Urgent aid needed to prevent deepening Sahel crisis

The Assistant High Commissioner for Protection at UNHCR, Ruvendrini Menikdiwela, has praised Mali and its neighboring nations for their generosity shown towards refugees. The UNHCR official was wrapping up a week-long visit to Mali and Togo and warmed that the the Sahel region remains in dire need of aid. 

By keeping Mali’s borders open, she said, to those fleeing danger throughout the region and upholding asylum principles, it is helping with one of the direst humanitarian crisis imaginable. However, she also warned that only a fraction of the funds the region needs were covered.

Mali is among several countries providing a haven to over 1.1 million refugees and asylum seekers who have crossed international borders to escape wars, persecution, and other perils across the Sahel as well as other areas of Africa.

In total, nearly 4.8 million people in the Sahel have recently been forced to flee their homes to seek safety elsewhere, the UN agency said.

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