Ambassador Taye Atseke-selassie, State Minister for Foreign Affairs, meeting with Ambassador Mohamed Abdi Affey, Special Envoy for the Somali refugee situation and Ms. Clementine Nkweta-Salami, Representative of the UNHCR to Ethiopia, on Wednesday (Nove 23) reiterated that Ethiopia stands committed to sustain its help for the protection of refugees in addition to promoting their livelihoods.
Ambassador Taye stating that Ethiopia views the question of refugees entwined with its interest affirmed that Ethiopia will closely work with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees to find durable solutions for refugees, including Somali refugees residing in Ethiopia. Ambassador Taye noted that Ethiopia continues to create enabling conditions for capacity building and livelihood promotion, adding that irrigation programs along with the provision of basic services including access to education are supportive of Somali refugees in Ethiopia.
Ms. Clementine Nkweta-Salami on her part noted that the UNHCR is always appreciative and supportive of Ethiopia’s open door policy for humanitarian access to and protection of refugees, pointing out that Ethiopia’s commitment for the protection of refugees was exemplified by its pledges to refugees during President Obama’s Leaders’ Summit held on September 20.
Ambassador Mohamed Abdi Affey, Special Envoy for the Somali refugee situation, expressing his thanks for the role played and support extended by Ethiopia to Somali refugees noted that UNHCR encourages Ethiopia to maintain its support to Somali refugees. He also said that Ethiopia continues to champion peace and stability in Somalia. He also noted UNHC is planning to hold an IGAD Summit aiming at finding a lasting solution to address the situation of Somali refugees.
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