Sudan Humanitarian Groups: Refugees Could Reach 200,000

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Washington (SONNA)-Humanitarian organizations are ramping up efforts to assist refugees who continue streaming into Sudan to escape fighting in Ethiopia’s northern Tigray region.

Jense Hesemann, emergency coordinator for the U.N. refugee agency in Sudan, said thousands of new Ethiopian refugees are arriving in Sudan every day.

“The emergency refugee registration teams at UNHCR and the government’s commission for refugees here in Sudan by now have registered over 40,000 new arrivals from Ethiopian since the 7th of November this year,” Hesemann told VOA’s South Sudan in Focus.

The refugees enter Sudan through the Hamdayet border point in Kassala state, the Lugdi border point in Gadaref state and a new location further south at the Aderafi border point where about 700 Ethiopian refugees crossed into Sudan’s Blue Nile state over the weekend.

The number of Ethiopian refugees entering Sudan could soon reach 200,000 if fighting between Ethiopian federal government troops and Tigray regional forces continues, said Hesemann.

U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet on Tuesday urged government forces and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) to give clear orders to their forces to spare and protect the civilian population from ongoing clashes.

“The highly aggressive rhetoric on both sides regarding the fight for [Tigray’s regional capital of] Mekelle is dangerously provocative and risks placing already vulnerable and frightened civilians in grave danger,” Bachelet said.

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