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UN Mission Meets with Humanitarian Partners

Chad: UN Mission Meets with Humanitarian Partners to Discuss Mutual Concerns

New York, Sep 11 2008 5:10PM

United Nations officials have met in recent days with members of the humanitarian community in Chad to discuss issues of common concern, particularly with regard to the estimated 250,000 refugees and 180,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) living in the east of the country.

A gathering in the capital, N’Djamena, today brought the Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General, Rima Salah, along with colleagues from the UN Mission in Chad and the Central African Republic MINURCAT, together with humanitarian partners, including non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and UN relief agencies. A similar meeting was held in Abeché, in eastern Chad, earlier this week.

Ms. Salah noted the importance of such meetings, which provide an opportunity for all participants to get an overview of the various activities being carried out in the country, and strengthen partnerships among them.

She also voiced the hope that such meetings would lead to a better understanding of MINURCAT’s mandate by its partners. “After all, a successful relationship and a shared vision amongst us all are integral to the success of our mission,” she stated.

In addition, the Deputy Special Representative expressed her gratitude to the Chadian authorities for the recent signing of the Memorandum of Understanding establishing the Détachement intégré de sécurité (DIS), a special unit composed of Chadian police and gendarmes responsible for the protection of refugees and IDPs in eastern Chad.

Ahead of the deployment of the first contingent of that unit, the head of MINURCAT, Victor Angelo, visited Farchana, a camp in eastern Chad housing over 20,000 refugees from the Darfur region of neighbouring Sudan.

During the visit, which brought together a number of administrative and local security officials, Mr. Angelo noted that a major concern for the UN in eastern Chad is the humanitarian situation of the refugees and IDPs, as well as improving access to education, health care and economic opportunities.

Linked to both of those is security, which is vital for carrying out humanitarian and development efforts, added Mr. Angelo, who met with aid workers operating in the region and refugees from the Farchana camp.

Established six months ago, MINURCAT includes a multi-dimensional UN presence and a European Union military force (EUFOR) that are jointly trying to bring stability to eastern Chad and north-eastern CAR, which have been beset by widespread fighting and civilian displacement in recent years.

ENDS

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