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EU CALLS FOR MORE SUPPORT FOR UGANDA WHOSE REFUGEE BURDEN IS RISING

KAMPALA, The European Union (EU), which is already playing a significant part in financing the refugee cause in Uganda, has called for more support from the international community as the refugee burden on Uganda becomes heavier.

The EU says non-traditional donors need to quickly join the effort if Uganda is to avert a crisis following a relentless exodus of refugees into the country in the last few months. Of the 65 million people around the world who have been forced from their homes to become refugees, Uganda alone has more than 1.2 million, most of them people fleeing the fighting in South Sudan.

Uganda is standing at the forefront . with its history of hosting refugees, Uganda keeps its door open to those fleeing persecution in their own countries. We call on all non-traditional donors to join the effort, said EU in a statement on Tuesday.

Based on current commitments, the EU funds 47 per cent of the cost of the humanitarian response to refugees in Uganda. However, with the influx, reported at about 2,000 refugees per day to Uganda, the situation has become more desperate in the last 12 months.

Humanitarian agencies, including United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the World Food Programme (WFP) have become constrained and have been louder in calling for more funding.

As of May, the UNCHR were seeking 1.4 billion US dollars to provide life-saving aid to South Sudanese refugees in Uganda and in several other neighbouring countries.

The EU said in the statement that it had stood beside Uganda from the onset of the crisis by providing financial support for refugee activities and was hoping for more players to join in supporting Uganda.

We hope the Solidarity Summit will mobilise not only political and financial support to meet the needs of refugees and communities, but will create new partnerships, investments and ideas, the statement added.

Kampala is hosting the Solidarity Summit on June 22 and 23 with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres expected in Kampala as chief guest.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

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