International community must help finance voluntary repatriation of refugees to Somalia

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees has concluded a five-day visit to Kenya and Somalia.

It follows an announcement by the Kenyan government last month that it plans to close Dadaab Refugee camp by November.

Filippo Grandi visited Dadaab, which is home to nearly 350,000, mostly Somali refugees. He also met with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta.

At a media briefing in Nairobi on Monday, Grandi said he’d received assurances that the repatriation of refugees to Somalia would not contravene international obligations.

He said stakeholders will meet on June 25th to discuss a timeline and donor support for the process.

Grandi also said the international community’s response had been insufficient and that the UNHCR would seek more financial support for refugees choosing to return.