Overseas Civilian Contractors

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“Silent crisis” as more Eritreans flee

ADDIS ABABA, 5 August 2011 (IRIN)

More and more Eritrean refugees, mostly educated young men, continue to arrive in Ethiopia, with the UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR, expressing concern over the rising numbers.

“Most say they left their country [to avoid] a prolonged military conscription, but they also say they want to join their families on the road,” Moses Okello, UNHCR’s representative in Ethiopia, told IRIN.

Ethiopia hosts at least 61,000 Eritrean refugees.

UNHCR has described the latest Eritrean refugee influx as a “silent crisis”, coming at a time when the Horn of Africa has been gripped by the worst drought in 60 years.

Okello said those arriving were in good condition compared with thousands of Somali refugees in Ethiopia’s Dolo Ado area in the southeast.

On average, 1,300 Eritreans leave their country for Ethiopia every month, according to government statistics.

“The trend seems non-stop and yet increasing,” according to Ayalew Aweke, the deputy director of the government’s Administration for Refugees and Returnee Affairs (ARRA)

Please read more here

August 5, 2011 - Posted by | Africa, Eritrea | , , , ,

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