Arab States And UNHCR Sign Agreement To Address Refugee Crisis

The UN refugee agency (UNHCR) and the League of Arab States (LAS) signed a formal Memorandum of Understanding on Friday, to respond more effectively to the region’s refugee crisis.

The agreement includes better humanitarian access and emergency response to the predicament of refugees, internally-displaced and stateless people in the Middle East and North Africa.

It was signed by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, and the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, on the margins of the 72nd Session of the UN General Assembly.

“This agreement further solidifies the long-standing cooperation UNHCR has shared with the League … and its member states in addressing fundamental humanitarian and displacement challenges,” said Mr Grandi.

UNHCR estimates that over half of the refugees worldwide and some 40 per cent of internally displaced persons, are being hosted in Arab countries.

The on-going humanitarian operations in the region also take up about half of the UN Agency’s annual budget.

UN Radio/Ghana/