More than one million Somalis have fled their country

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The number of Somalis who have fled their country has now surpassed one million, according to the UN refugee agency (UNHCR).

Over two decades of internal conflict, coupled with persistent drought and food shortages continue to drive Somalis from their homeland and into neighbouring countries including Kenya, Ethiopia and Yemen.

UNHCR considers Somalia one of the world's worst and longest running refugee and humanitarian crises, with more than 1.3 million people internally displaced. Spokesman Adrian Edwards says the number of Somali refugees crossing into Kenya and Ethiopia has declined significantly this year, although the situation in the country remains bleak with many struggling to cope.

"The situation in most of the southern and central part of Somalia remains fluid and unstable; though there appears to be relative calm is some areas. The drought has been less severe this year, yet the prospects for the harvest next month are poor. Many people struggle to cope, as livelihood’s remain extremely fragile. UNHCR believes that humanitarian crises must ultimately be solved through political solutions. The next few months are an important stage in the search for solutions to the suffering that has afflicted Somalia for two decades. Somali people carry the primary responsibility for bringing peace and stability to their own country. We do note, however, that the international community has a significant responsibility to support Somalis in bringing about a positive outcome."

Duration: 41″

Filed under Today's News.
UN Radio Daily News Programme
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