Radio Erena: 20 May 2015
Khartoum – The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) handed over on 14 May 2015 vehicles and motorcycles to the Government of Gedarif State to support its law enforcement agencies in fighting human trafficking, kidnapping and smuggling of persons in Eastern Sudan.
UNHCR donated 3 brand new Toyota Land Cruiser Pickups and 7 Honda XR125 Motorcycles. The vehicles and motorcycles will enhance the capacity of the Gedarif State law enforcement agencies to curb trafficking incidents at the border, especially near Gallabat, Lugdi and Kunina.
“We have been running short on resources to monitor the border of about 260 km with few vehicles available, but now the new vehicles provided by UNHCR will be an additional support to our security and police team on the ground,” His Excellency Mr. Al-Daw Mohammed, Gedarif State Governor said.
Since 2012, UNHCR has been actively addressing the phenomenon of human trafficking in Sudan. UNHCR has notably supported the Government of Sudan through the provision of equipment to enhance refugee camp security, and build government capacity to manage their borders.
“We thank UNHCR for supporting the state government to respond to human trafficking, which has become a challenge in Gedarif State,” said Mr. Hassan Mohammed Osman, Gedarif State Adviser for Refugee Affairs.
With the endorsement of the Government, the 2013-2014 Joint UNHCR-IOM Strategy to Address Human Trafficking, Kidnappings and Smuggling of Persons in Sudan was developed to increase the protection of refugees, asylum-seekers and migrants at risk of abuse by smugglers and traffickers on the way into, through and out of Sudan.
“The strategy mainly focuses on supporting the bordering states in Sudan including the improvement of living conditions in refugee camps. This includes logistic and capacity building for authorities in the bordering states in Eastern Sudan,” said Eng. Hamad Elgizouli, Commissioner for Refugees (COR).
As a result of joint efforts, East Sudan has made a landmark improvement in the security situation for refugees and asylum-seekers residing in camps in the region. The number of trafficking incidents reported to UNHCR has significantly decreased from 338 in 2012 to 113 in 2014, and almost no kidnappings have been reported from the camps since the beginning of the year.
“UNHCR commends the Sudanese Government in its efforts to tackle human trafficking, in particular with the establishment of a committee at the national level. Addressing the phenomenon of human trafficking, smuggling of persons and kidnappings of asylum-seekers remains an important priority to UNHCR in Sudan”, Mr Mohammed Adar, UNHCR Representative in Sudan, says.
Many asylum-seekers and refugees continue to enter Sudan, resorting to smugglers to arrange their journey, thus exposing them to the risk of human trafficking and other types of abuse. So far in 2015, the rate of new arrivals in East Sudan has reached an average of 1,350 people per month.
Source : sudanvisiondaily.com