UNHCR deeply saddened by the tragic loss of life in Kakuma refugee camp

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, is deeply saddened by the recent tragic loss of two refugee lives in two separate incidents in Kakuma refugee camp, Kenya. We wish to express our most sincere condolences to their families and friends. Last night, a refugee was killed and another one wounded during […]

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, is deeply saddened by the recent tragic loss of two refugee lives in two separate incidents in Kakuma refugee camp, Kenya. We wish to express our most sincere condolences to their families and friends.

Last night, a refugee was killed and another one wounded during a burglary incident in Kakuma refugee camp 1, block 5. Police forces and emergency services were immediately deployed, and investigations are ongoing. We are assisting the family members of the deceased refugee in their time of need.

We are also deeply disheartened by the apparent suicide of an asylum-seeker who took his own life a few days after his arrival in the camp, on 18 August.

The deceased person was under mandatory quarantine in the Kakuma Reception Centre, as it is systematically done for new arrivals and in line with the protocols that have been put in place by the Government to help curb the spread of COVID-19. He was being closely followed by our medical partners, including a psychiatric nurse, as he was withdrawn, appeared disoriented and had refused to eat. He was placed under surveillance but managed to leave the center late Saturday night, 22 August. His body was discovered on Monday, 24 August in a wooded area adjacent to the reception center.

Out of respect for the deceased and their surviving family members, we urge restraint at this tragic moment and warn against any use of pictures or footage of the deceased.

Together with our partners, we continue to identify those most in need to offer assistance, psychosocial support and counseling. This includes mental health assistance, regular home visits and a dedicated toll-free and multi-lingual Protection Helpline. These services together with security arrangements have been reinforced to meet increased demands in recent months, including for those with suicidal ideation. Several hundred individuals in Kakuma, have benefitted from these services over the past few months. We are also working closely with the law enforcement to enhance the security of the camp during this challenging time.

UNHCR remains committed to providing protection and assistance to the nearly 200,000 refugees living in Kakuma refugee camp.

ENDS

FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:

Eujin Byun, +254 798 487 988

[email protected]

Dana Hughes, +254 733 440 536

[email protected]

Rose Ogola, +254 729 578 809

[email protected]