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Central Darfur hands over residential plots to returnees

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Sudanese returnee welcomed by his relatives after his arrival to Tina in North Darfur from refugees camps in Chad on 16 April 2018 (UNHCR Photo)
December 8, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - The government of Central Darfur State has begun to hand over residential plots to the first batch of refugees returning from Chad.

The director of the Higher Council for Peace and Voluntary Return in Central Darfur Aamer Youssef said the government started to hand over residential plots to 352 refugees who arrived at Um Dokhon locality from refugee camps in eastern Chad.

He told the semi-official Sudan Media Center that the UN Higher Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) has provided humanitarian aid meeting the needs of returnees for three months.

Youssef added the government of Central Darfur and the aid groups are working to prepare the returnees areas in Um Dokhon and Um Jaradel localities.

He pointed out that some of the returnees belong to South Darfur State, stressing readiness to receive the remaining groups of refugees in eastern Chad.

Last October, Sudan’s Refugee Commission said Chad is currently hosting over 300,000 Sudanese refugees pointing out that 50% of them have expressed their desire to return to the country voluntarily.

It is noteworthy that the Sudanese refugees are residing in the eastern region of the neighbouring country not far from the border with Chad.

On 31 May 2017, Sudan, Chad and the UNHCR signed two separate tripartite agreements on the voluntary return of Sudanese refugees from Chad and Chadian refugees from Sudan.

Also, the three parties in January 2018 signed an operational plan for the repatriation of 20,000 Sudanese refugees from Chad to Darfur region during this year.

UN reports say the security situation in Darfur has largely improved but stress that the lack of infrastructures and services prevent the return of refugees and displaced persons to their areas of origin.

The Sudanese army has been fighting a group of armed movements in Darfur since 2003. UN agencies estimate that over 300,000 people were killed in the conflict, and over 2.5 million were displaced.

(ST)

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