Somali Refugees in Kenya Face Abuse, Deportation: Rights Group

By Asad Cabdullahi Mataan

Half a million refugees from war-ravagedSomalia face abuse at the hands of Kenyan authorities, migration expert Mark Yarnell from the pressure group Refugees International told RIA Novosti on Tuesday.

“The current situation for the half million Somali refugees in Kenya is untenable. On the one hand they are facing abuse from Kenyan police and a broader push from the government for them to return to Somalia,” Yarnell said.

“On the other hand, the humanitarian situation inside Somalia is deteriorating severely. Kenya must maintain asylum space for Somalis until their situation at home truly improves,” the expert said.

In a new study, Between a Rock and a Hard Place, the group counts 259 Somali deportees from Nairobi to Mogadishu and another 3,000 Somali refugees being forcibly relocated from Kenyan cities to Kenyan refugee camps between April and June this year.

Kenya hosts about half a million refugees from Somalia, which has seen successive civil wars since the toppling of Soviet-backed dictator Siad Barre in 1991. Nairobi plans to repatriate refugees, amid a string of Somali-linked terror strikes on the East African nation.