Posted by: africanpressorganization | 8 April 2009

Gulf of Aden / UNHCR / Refugees




Gulf of Aden / UNHCR / Refugees



NEW YORK, April 8, 2009/African Press Organization (APO)/ — Daily press briefing by the offices of the spokesperson for the UN secretary-general and the spokesperson for the general assembly president


Eight people drowned and another 22 are missing and presumed dead in the Gulf of Aden, as a result of two different smuggling incidents over the weekend off the coast of Yemen.


The UN refugee agency (UNHCR) reports that, so far this year, a total of 339 boats and more than 17,000 people have arrived in Yemen after making the perilous voyage across the Gulf of Aden from the Horn of Africa.  To date, 74 people have reportedly died and 51 are missing at sea.  Those who make the crossing are fleeing desperate situations of civil war, political instability, poverty and famine in Somalia and the Horn of Africa.


The refugee agency, meanwhile, says it has joined a virtual charity initiative by the popular social networking site Facebook that will help raise money to provide shelter for uprooted people in Afghanistan, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Sudan.


UNHCR explains that people’s purchases would translate into real shelter aid for refugees and internally displaced people.


“For example, if 20 friends buy a virtual tent, they will raise enough funds for a refugee family to live in a real tent — giving them dignity and security,” UNHCR says. 


SOURCE : United Nations – Office of the Spokesperson of the Secretary-General



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