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UN envoy offers solutions to internal displacements

08 May 2014, 12:52

Nairobi - The United Nations independent expert looking into displaced persons has called for a more rigorous and equitable approach to solving the issue of internally displaced persons in the country.

The expert, who is tasked by the Human Rights Council to look into conditions of internally displaced persons made the remarks as he concluded his visit to Kenya.

“Causes of internal displacement are many and recurrent, and solutions must be pursued more rigorously for all IDPs in an equal manner,” said Chaloka Beyani, the UN Special Rapporteur.

Beyani highlighted the issue of IDPs since November 2010, pointing at post-election violence, inter-communal clashes, evictions or natural disasters as major causes of displacement in Kenya.

Kenya plays host to the world largest refugee population of more than 550 000, there are also an estimated 300 000 IDPs, according to statistics compiled by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

During his nine-day official visit to Kenya, Beyani met with representatives of the national and county governments, and other stakeholders, including IDPs, in Nairobi, Nakuru and Moyale.

Following his visit to Moyale, where he saw burnt houses and destroyed schools leaving the displaced without a place to return to, Beyani stressed that “displaced pastoralists require special attention.”

“The end of displacement cannot be determined by a political decision, but by reality. Durable solutions are only achieved once IDPs can enjoy their human rights without discrimination.”

He welcomed the commitment and efforts by the Government of Kenya to resettle the displaced, but noted that lack of secure land tenure, children out of school, no access to health services, lack of livelihood opportunities and discrimination remain obstacles to lasting solutions.

Beyani's visit was a follow-up to an earlier one in 2011.

 - CAJ News

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