UNHCR welcomes Kenya High Court decision on urban refugee rights
This is a summary of what was said by UNHCR spokesperson Fatoumata Lejeune-Kaba – to whom quoted text may be attributed – at today's press briefing at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.
UNHCR welcomes the High Court of Kenya's ruling which upholds the asylum right of urban refugees. The decision, reached on 26 July, relates to the "Petition number 19 of 2013" in which refugees challenged a directive issued by the Government of Kenya in December last year to transfer refugees from urban areas to the refugee camps at Dadaab and Kakuma.
The High Court ruled against the directive which had particularly dire consequences for the protection and well-being of refugee communities in Nairobi and other cities in the country.
Indeed, as a result of the directive Somali refugees and asylum seekers began to report increased police harassment, detention and extortion mainly in Nairobi. Many of them could not move about freely and fear of such treatment led hundreds of Somali refugees to return to Somalia or move to neighboring countries.
As of December, there were a total of 51,000 mainly Somalia urban refugees in Kenya.
Most of the refugees living in urban areas have developed coping mechanisms, and so do rely on humanitarian assistance. There are also large numbers of refugee children attending schools in urban areas whose education would have been compromised had the relocation order been carried out.
In keeping with its mandate, UNHCR appeared in the petition as a "friend of the Court" or "Amicus Curiae" and provided advice on the applicable international refugee and human rights laws.
UNHCR hopes that the government will implement this important constitutional decision and move fast to resume legal services that were suspended pending the court process. These include the registration and issuance of documents to refugees and asylum seekers, which are essential for their freedom of movement, access to social and community benefits, as well as their protection against arbitrary arrest.
UNHCR believes that this court decision is important for the jurisprudence on refugees' rights not only in Kenya but also around the world.
Kenya hosts some 600,000 refugees.
For further information on this topic, please contact:
- In Kenya (Nairobi): Emmanuel Nyabera on mobile +254 733 995 975
- In Geneva: Daniel MacIsaac on mobile +41 79 200 7617
- Fatoumata Lejeune-Kaba on mobile +41 79 249 34 83
Related news and stories
Diner gives Burundian refugee a taste of self reliance
Syrian refugees face tough odds in quest for higher education
UNHCR seeks equal treatment for all Rohingya in Bangladesh
In Iraqi camps, Syrians seek respite from hardship of exile
UN seeks $4.63 billion to aid Syrian refugees and host nations
'Growing hopelessness' grips 'forgotten' Somali refugees, warns UNHCR
Your search for « kakuma » matched 884 results. Displaying page 17 of 99 pages.
Q&A: Shading tree education gave Lost Boy start in life19 Oct 2007 ... how access to education in north-west Kenya's Kakuma camp had transformed his life as a refugee. ... It was not a school, but I started to learn there. But it was not until 1992, in Kakuma, that I ......
Practicing and Promoting Sound Environmental Management in Refugee/Returnee Operations3 Dec 2002 ... ... Settlement In Kenya 63 • The Management of Kakuma Refugee Camp in Kenya: Survival as an ... significant refugee populations located at Kakuma and Dadaab in Kenya’s arid and semi-arid lands. ......
Global Report 2003 - UNHCR in Uganda1 Jun 2004 ... ... UDAN S UDAN SUDAN KAMPALA KAMPALA KAMPALA KAMPALA KAMPALA KAMPALA KAMPALA KAMPALA KAMPALA Kakuma camp Kakuma camp Kakuma camp Kakuma camp Kakuma camp Kakuma camp Kakuma camp Kakuma camp Kakuma camp ......
Cartoon exhibition gives refugees the last laugh21 Jun 2005 ... In the run-up to the event, five leading Kenyan cartoonists had toured Kakuma and Dadaab refugee ... Ethiopian refugee artist currently living in Kakuma camp. "The message is particularly relevant ......
Resources for ages 15-18 in Language & Literature13 Mar 2007 ... All tomorrows are the same from Tilting Cages: An Anthology of Refugee Writings. Edited by Naomi Flutter and Carl Solomon. Sydney, 1995 Kakuma is found in Turkana district which is situated in the ......
Access to Multi-Drug Resistant Tuberculosis Treatment in Dadaab Refugee Camps, KenyaJun 2013 ... 1 Background Kenya hosts over 630,000 refugees in Dadaab and Kakuma refugee camps, and in urban Nairobi, some of whom have lived there for over two decades. However, most have arrived in the last 5 ......
UNHCR to move urban refugees affected by post-election violence in Kenya22 Jan 2008 ... On Monday, UNHCR drew up lists of refugees who wish to transfer from Jamhuri Park to Kakuma refugee ... UNHCR is caring for some 270,000 refugees, mainly from Somalia and Sudan, in Dadaab and Kakuma, the ......
Global Report 2003 - UNHCR in Sudan1 Jun 2004 ... ... ASMARA ASMARA ASMARA ASMARA ASMARA ASMARA ASMARA ASMARA ASMARA KHARTOUM KHARTOUM KHARTOUM KHARTOUM KHARTOUM KHARTOUM KHARTOUM KHARTOUM KHARTOUM Kakuma camp Kakuma camp Kakuma camp Kakuma camp Kakuma ......
Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia14 Nov 2005 ... ... Kassala Kassala Kassala Kassala Kassala Kassala Kassala Kassala Kassala Gambella Gambella Gambella Gambella Gambella Gambella Gambella Gambella Gambella Kakuma camp Kakuma camp Kakuma camp Kakuma camp ......