11 May 2004
With more than 60-thousand Sudanese refugees in camps in eastern Chad, UN agencies continue operations to relocate and assist tens of thousands of others. The Sudanese crossed the border from western Sudan?s Darfur region over the past year to escape fighting between government-backed militias and rebels. But humanitarian operations are running into problems.
Jennifer Clark is a spokesperson for the UN refugee agency, the UNHCR. From Geneva, she told English to Africa reporter Joe De Capua they?re facing ?severe logistical challenges.? She says these include shortages of water, fuel and firewood as well as donor funds. The UNHCR has requested $21 million dollars for the current operation, but has received only $14 million.
Ms. Clarke says the UNHCR has opened a new camp at Mille, bringing the number of camps to six. Un agencies are working with CARE to distribute jerry cans, buckets and plastic sheeting, as well as 15 day rations of corn flour, sorghum, corn-soya blend, beans and oil.