Sudanese refugees are being transferred from the Al Damazin Transit Centre, located on Ethiopia’s western border with Sudan, to a new camp in the Benishangul Gumuz region.
The first group of 438 Sudanese refugee has been transferred to the new Bambisi camp.
IOM was forced to relocate the refugees after the Al Damazin camp exceeded its capacity.
Currently, there are around 17,000 Sudanese refugees in the Al Damazin camp, although its holding capacity is 14,000.
After fighting between the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement North (SPLM-N) erupted in September last year, tens of thousands of people were forced to flee their homes into newly independent South Sudan and Ethiopia.
During the past 5 months over 9,500 Sudanese refugees have arrived in Ethiopia’s Benishangul Gumuz region, among these more than 2,500 of them arrived in May.
UNHCR representative in Ethiopia, Kisut Gebregzabhir, told Sudan Tribune that all the newly arriving refugees are from Sudan’s Blue Nile State.
“They are fleeing violence in Blue Nile State. New arrivals claim to have been attacked by unknown people and their fields being burnt”, he said.
According to Gebregzabhir, the influx was high in April and May, however, June has seen a lower number of arrivals.
The IOM say that in addition to providing transport to relocate the refugees, the organisation is seeking funds to build 1,500 shelters at the Bambasi refugee camp. UNHCR will cover part of the funding.