The government of Kenya has an obligation to respect international commitments as it embarks on a process of repatriating Somalia refugees, Somali foreign affairs minister said.
“Kenya will abide by domestic and international legal instruments to facilitate smooth relocation of an estimated 350, 000 Somali refugees,”said Somali foreign affairs minister Abdisalam Hadliye Omar who spoke to GoobJoog news.
He said that the Somali government didn’t see refugees as a burden, but the repatriation should be based voluntary.
“We want our refugees back. Definitely. But you have to calibrate the way they are coming back,” said Hadliye.
On June 16th Kenya’s Foreign Minister, Amina Mohamed said the UN gave the nod to close Dadaab camp by November of this year.
“We briefed him on the modalities and means through which we will conduct the exercise. We informed him the process will be humane and in line with international standards,’ said Amina while speaking to the media.
President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud and his Kenyan counterpart Uhuru Kenyatta issued a joint statement last week following a meeting in Nairobi in which both committed to working jointly on the orderly, humane and dignified repatriation of Somali refugees back to Somalia as per the Tripartite Agreement.
The two countries and UNHCR signed a Tripartite Agreement in 2014 which outlined the process for voluntary repatriation of refugees from Dadaab camp.