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Germany boosts aid to curb irregular migration from African countries

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier says UNHCR will use the funds to curb irregular migration from Africa

Germany has pledged to raise its contributions to the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) by 61 million euros to curb irregular migration from African countries.

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier says UNHCR will use the funds to curb irregular migration from Africa
German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier says UNHCR will use the funds to curb irregular migration from Africa

The funds will also support internally displaced people in several African countries.

Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier made the announcement during a meeting in Berlin with UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi.

“More than 60 million people – never before have so many people been forced to flee their homes,” the German Foreign Minister said after the meeting.

“Of course, the humanitarian crisis in Syria and the neighbouring countries is a special focus of our aid efforts,” Mr Steinmeier said.

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He also made it clear that “looking beyond the situation in the Middle East, we also have a responsibility not to lose sight of crises that are currently not getting global attention.”

Mr Steinmeier mentioned the Lake Chad Basin region, South Sudan, Somalia and Burundi as examples of crises not getting media attention.

In these countries, the situation has “recently worsened dramatically due to the escalation of existing conflicts and the flaring up of new ones, as well as climate-related natural disasters,” he said.

Sub-Saharan African countries are currently sheltering the largest number of refugees in the world.

Mr Steinmeier said the German government will before the end of the year avail to “the UNHCR 61 million euros for additional humanitarian aid, to respond to the acute crises in Africa.”

The funding will be used to provide assistance to people close to their home regions so that they may not feel compelled to set out on a dangerous journey to Europe.

They’ll also be used for UNHCR projects to aid internally displaced persons and refugees in Burundi, Mali, Somalia and South Sudan, as well as in neighbouring countries, and to assist people in the Lake Chad Basin region who are affected by terrorist activities of Boko Haram.

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