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World Refugee Day 2002: India

World Refugee Day 2002: India

20 June 2002

Kids play in a neighbourhood populated mostly by Iraqi refugees. Because refugees are not allowed to work in Syria, children often must take informal jobs to help support their families.

UNHCR, with the support of the India Habitat Centre, gave a public lecture titled "Reconciling Refugee Protection with National Security". The event was chaired by General Raghavan of the Delhi Policy Group. UNHCR also presented a slide show on the refugees and its work in India.

At YMCA in New Delhi, refugee children celebrated World Refugee Day. The programme started with a prayer service, followed by songs and dances, and it ended with an award ceremony for the paintings done during the summer camp.

The Voluntary Health Association of Delhi (VHAD) organised a one-day celebration for refugees. A local eye clinic offered free consultations for a half day. Refugee children presented a cultural show. Handicrafts and food stalls were set up by refugees. The traditional Afghan dances and other performances were shown in the evening.

Refugee groups, the All Burmese Refugee Committee, and the Khalsa Diwan Welfare Society, invited their Indian neighbours to cultural events dedicated to World Refugee Day.

In Chennai, Sri Lankan Tamil refugee children, along with local children, participated in an art workshop, painting on the theme of "home". UNHCR presented the best works to the Sri Lankan Minister for Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Refugees. Twenty paintings were selected and sent to Colombo, Sri Lanka, where children including those who are internally displaced painted on the same theme.