This is a summary of what was said by UNHCR spokesperson Andrej Mahecic – to whom quoted text may be attributed – at today’s press briefing at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.
UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, airlifted 93.5 tonnes of emergency aid for Sudanese refugees in Chad from its Global Stockpile in Dubai on Thursday (March 19). The UNHCR-chartered Boeing 777 landed in the Chadian capital yesterday evening.
Clashes in El Geneina, in Sudan’s West Darfur State, since December 2019 have forced more than 16,000 people, mostly women and children, to flee violence and cross into neighbouring Chad.
They arrived exhausted, traumatized and often with signs of malnutrition. Most are staying in the open or under makeshift shelters, with little protection from the elements. Shelter, food, water and basic health care are urgently needed, as refugees are being relocated further away from the border, for safety and protection reasons.
This latest influx brings the total number of Sudanese refugees in Chad to 360,000.
Yesterday’s airlift included 10,000 blankets, 12,000 jerry cans, 12,000 mosquito nets, 10,640 plastic buckets, 6,000 kitchen sets, 4,000 sleeping mats, 2,000 solar lamps and 2,000 plastic sheets, in addition to one ambulance vehicle. These emergency relief items are expected to respond to the humanitarian needs of some 10,000 refugees.
The humanitarian charter flight, worth US$308,000, was organized by UPS through their team in Dubai and the transportation costs were fully covered by UPS.
UNHCR is working around the clock to help people forced to flee their homes due to violence and persecution. This shipment will ensure thousands of vulnerable Sudanese families receive much-needed aid.
We are grateful to UPS for its timely donation covering the transportation expenses, and the International Humanitarian City, global hub for humanitarian emergency preparedness and response in Dubai, for its continuous support.
The UNHCR global stockpile in Dubai was established in 2006 and is our largest stockpile in the world. This facility has stocks of family tents and other shelter materials as well as blankets, kitchen sets and other relief items for more than 250,000 people.