SOUTH SUDAN / GRANDI RETURNEES VISIT

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27-Jan-2021 00:06:00
During a visit to South Sudan, UN High Commissioner Filippo Grandi called on authorities to “commit firmly to security, to rule of law, [and] to good governance” as an increased number of former refugees return home. UNHCR

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STORY: SOUTH SUDAN / GRANDI RETURNEES VISIT
TRT: 6:00
SOURCE: UNHCR
RESTRICTIONS: PLEASE CREDIT UNHCR ON SCREEN
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NUER / NATS

DATELINE: 26 JANUARY 2021, UNITY STATE, SOUTH SUDAN

SHOTLIST:

26 JANUARY 2021, BENTIU, UNITY STATE, SOUTH SUDAN

1. Wide shot, women walking
2. Wide shot, herd walking past
3. Close up, woman carrying a bag on her head
4. Various shots, Mary Nyekuola, South Sudanese refugee returnee on wheelchair
5. Wide shot, Mary with her children
6. Med shot, Mary with her children, wheelchair in foreground
7. Wide shot, Mary with her children
8. SOUNDBITE (Nuer) Mary Nyekuola, South Sudanese returnee:
“When we first came back, we cried. When I fled, I was with my husband, but I came back alone with my children. I had mixed feelings. It was painful but at the same time I was happy to be home.”
9. Wide shot, Mary outside shelter
10. Close up, Mary’s child
11. Med shot, Mary with her children
12. SOUNDBITE (Nuer) Mary Nyekuola, South Sudanese returnee:
“If I am given a tea shop with items like sugar, sweets and others. My niece and I can run the shop by selling tea and sweets.”
13.Various shots, Mary meeting with UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi and Regional Director for East, Horn of Africa and Great Lakes, Clementine Awu Nkweta Salami and other officials
14. Med shot, South Sudanese returnee looking at camera
15. Med shot, women seated on mat
16. Various shots, meeting

26 JANUARY 2021, PANAKUACH, UNITY STATE, SOUTH SUDAN

17. Aerial shot, Panakuach border area where buses carrying refugee returnees have just arrived
18. Med shot, Passenger in bus
19. Close up, young children in bus
20. Wide shot, buses carrying South Sudanese returnees
21. Various shots, passengers inside the bus
22. SOUNDBITE (English) Filippo Grandi, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees:
“We have seen an increase in numbers of people returning, there has been a decline during the peak of the pandemic but now it is picking up again, ahead of the rainy season which will occur in a few months. So, this is an example of why it is important in this region to start thinking in terms of solutions.”
23. Various shots, High Commissioner Grandi speaking to refugee returnees at border area
24. Various shots, buses carrying refugee returnees at border point after crossing into South Sudan
25. SOUNDBITE (English) Filippo Grandi, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees:
“First of all it is important as I said in Juba to authorities that they confirm firmly to security, to rule of law, to good governance and then there is a massive development effort which is necessary so that all these people that are returning can send their kids to school, can have proper health services, can work and do not remain unemployed and maybe depending on humanitarian aid, so this is just the beginning but it is important in these trends to foresee and to think ahead, very prudently, we are not certainly promoting returns under these circumstances but simply thinking strategically.”
26. Med shot, luggage on bus
27. Close up, Sudanese license plate
28. Wide shots, bus driving into South Sudan

STORYLINE:

During a visit to South Sudan, UN High Commissioner Filippo Grandi called on authorities to “commit firmly to security, to rule of law, [and] to good governance” as an increased number of former refugees return home.

Grandi said an increased numbers of people have decided to return to South Sudan, adding that there was a “decline during the peak of the pandemic but now it is picking up again, ahead of the rainy season which will occur in a few months.” He said this is “an example of why it is important in this region to start thinking in terms of solutions.”

Grandi said there is a massive development effort which is necessary so that all returnees “can send their kids to school, can have proper health services, can work and do not remain unemployed and maybe depending on humanitarian aid. He said this is “just the beginning, but it is important in these trends to foresee and to think ahead, very prudently. We are not certainly promoting returns under these circumstances but simply thinking strategically.”


Thousands of South Sudanese refugees have been returning home in the hopes that long-term stability will prevail after a revitalised peace agreement was signed in September 2018, but they face significant challenges.

Many are returning to find their homes destroyed, weak social services and in some cases continued low-level violence amidst a global pandemic. Years of conflict have severely crippled basic infrastructures and stretched humanitarian aid.


UNHCR provides community-based assistance in areas of refugee and IDP return, that supports the entire community like digging boreholes, rehabilitating clinics and providing shelter assistance for the most vulnerable. More than 230,000 South Sudanese refugees have chosen to return home spontaneously in the last two years. Lasting peace is a crucial component for solutions to be safe, dignified sustainable return and reintegration.

Mary Nyekuola fled South Sudan in 2016 as conflict broke out close to her home in Bentiu, Unity state. She sought asylum Sudan with her husband and children, finding safety in Khartoum and four years later, has returned home. Her husband fell ill while in exile and passed away in 2018. Now, with four children she wants to rebuild her life in South Sudan but without work or land of her own she is struggling. Mary is living with a disability, moving around mostly on her wheelchair and the help of her nieces who moved in with her for support.

UN Refugee Chief Filippo Grandi is in South Sudan meeting government officials, refugees, internally displaced people and those that have chosen to return. Almost 4 million South Sudanese remain in exile abroad or displaced in their country. Grandi met with returnee women in Bentiu, Unity State who told him that their main challenges were poverty, land issues and inadequate services. UNHCR has a non-return advisory in place as the conditions in South Sudan are not yet conducive for durable returns.
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Alternate Title
unifeed210127c
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2599829