Malawi to repatriate Rwanda refugees

The Malawi Government says it will repatriate the remaining Rwandese refugees and asylum seekers  between June and December this year despite most of them showing no interest in returning to their country.

Malawi has about 18 000 refugees and asylum seekers primarily from the Great Lakes region, Sudan and Somalia and most of them are living in the country’s cities, towns and trading centres illegally.

Principal Secretary 2 in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Besten Chisamile, said government was, together with the currently working on United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR), working on modalities for smooth repatriation.

“The situation in Rwanda stabilized long ago and there is every reason for the remaining ones [refugees] to return to their home. We are working with the UNHCR on ensuring that we repatriate them,” he said.

Malawi to return Rwandan refugees to  their country safely and with dignity.
Malawi to return Rwandan refugees to their country safely and with dignity.

The principal secretary expressed hope for a successful voluntary repatriation exercise that involves the governments of Rwanda and Malawi and the UNHCR.

Malawi has been repatriating the refugees and asylum seekers back to their home 19 years after nearly one million Rwandans were killed during the 1994 genocide.

UNHCR has a programme of monitoring how the returnees are re-integrating in their societies back home to check if there were problems.

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