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U.N appeals for $1.2 billion to look after South Sudanese refugees in neighboring countries

March 17, 2021(Nyamilepedia) — The United Nations’ refugee agency and partners are appealing for $1.2 billion to provide life-saving assistance for more than two million refugees from South Sudan living in five neighboring countries in 2021.

Filippo Grandi, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, speaks during the sixty-ninth session of the Executive Committee (Photo credit: File/Supplied/UNHCR)
Filippo Grandi, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, speaks during the sixty-ninth session of the Executive Committee (Photo credit: File/Supplied/UNHCR)

According to the UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR spokesperson Babar Baloch, the South Sudanese refugee crisis is the largest on the African continent with most of the refugees living in remote, under-developed areas in their host countries. 

He said they are in great need of humanitarian and protection assistance.

“The COVID-19 pandemic combined with climate change-related challenges including severe flooding, droughts and desert locusts have compounded an already dire situation,” said Baloch. 

“Funding is urgently needed to provide life-sustaining assistance, including shelter, access to safe drinking water, education and health services.  Food shortages are particularly acute with insufficient funding already leading to ration cuts impacting hundreds of thousands of refugees,” he said.

According to UNHCR, this year’s response includes a renewed and increased focus on resilience and supporting livelihoods of both the refugees and host communities.

“The 2021 South Sudan Regional Refugee Response Plan complements the South Sudan Humanitarian Response Plan for 2021, also launching today. The HRP requires US$1.7 billion in funding to provide life-saving assistance and protection to 6.6 million people – including 350,000 refugees – in need within the country, many of whom are facing severe food insecurity due to conflict, climate change-related emergencies, and the economic impact of COVID-19,” Baloch added.

Baloch added that humanitarian partners will intensify gender-based violence prevention and response, and prioritize support to persons with specific needs, including strengthening child protection programs and scaling up psychosocial and mental health support.

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