UN bodies join forces to meet refugee needs in Ethiopia

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia—The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) signed an agreement in the capital Addis Ababa Friday to further strengthen their cooperation to meet the growing needs of refugees and their host communities in Ethiopia.

UNHCR’s Clementine Nkweta-Salami and UNICEF’s Gillian Mellsop signed the agreement, which outlines key areas of collaboration in child protection, education, health and nutrition, as well as water, sanitation and hygiene.

The agreement lasts until 2020.

“UNICEF and UNHCR have a long history of effective and demonstrated collaboration in humanitarian action which has greatly improved the lives of refugees over the years,” Nkweta-Salami said.

Mellsop on her part said: “The decision to have this agreement with UNHCR stems from our wish to formalize the complementarity of our work and ensure that we are jointly delivering results for children.”

Currently, Ethiopia hosts 783,340 refugees, 58.3 percent of whom are children under 18 years of age, including 38,502 unaccompanied and separated children.

As of September this year, Ethiopia has experienced a new influx of South Sudanese refugees with more than 39,000 new arrivals.


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