Thursday, 1 April 2010

Few displaced people back home

By Nasser Arrabyee/01/04/2010

Only 10 per cent of the 350,000 displaced people have returned to their homes and villages despite the war in Sa'ada, north of Yemen stopped last February, said a Yemeni official Thursday.

Security concerns due to the mines planted by Al Houthi rebels in their areas come at the top of the reasons why the return was so slow, said Former minister, Ahmed Al Kuhlani in press conference he held in Sana'a with UN relief agencies and a relief delegation from Saudi Arabia.

About 10 per cent IDPs have returned home From Al Mazrak refugee camp, the largest and most famous camp in the far west of Sa'ada, Al Kuhlani said.

However, about 50 per cent of those who displaced to areas around the Sa'ada city have returned home, said Al Kuhlani who is in charge for the camps of refugees from the war in Sa'ada.

Al Kuhlani said that the number of the IDPs (internally displaced persons) increased in the camps after the war stopped last February because there were thousands of people unable to reach the camps because of the war.

He said the number increased to 350,000 from 250,000 after the war stopped.

On his part, the chairman of the Saudi relief delegation, Zuhair Al Adrisi, said after a visit to Al Mazrak refugee camp, that Saudi Arabia made its best to provide all kind of support for the IDPs from the war on Al Houthi armed rebellion.

He said that one million US dollars was handed over the Sana'a-based UNHCR for helping the IDPs in Sa'ada.

"We allowed more than 4692 people to enter the territories of Saudi Arabia to get their needs of food and medicines in addition to providing all facilities for Saudi-based relief agencies to go for helping the IDPs in Yemen," Al Adrisi said.

The Yemeni official Al Kuhlani said the Emirate-run Al Mazrak camp (known as Mazrak 2) would keep providing services to the IDPs for one year from now. The official said UAE government allocated 50 million Derhm for operating Al Mazrak 2.

Unlike other camps, all basic services are offered to the IDPs in the Emirates-run camp, which is called by some people the "five-star" refugee camp.

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