Khartoum, January 22 (SUNA) - The Government of Japan has contributed US$1.6 million to UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, in support of protection and assistance interventions for refugees hosted in White Nile State, Sudan.

A press release UNHCR issued Sunday stated that the Japanese contribution would benefit over 220,000 South Sudanese refugees in the state, adding that the new funding will also benefit members of the host community in the areas surrounding the camps.

“We are grateful to the Government and people of Japan for this commitment and welcome our continued partnership to protect and assist refugees in Sudan,” said Axel Bisschop, UNHCR Representative in Sudan. He stressed that the timely funding would enable UNHCR to provide critical humanitarian assistance to refugees in White Nile State.

“It is our honor to work with UNHCR Sudan through our project ‘Protection and Assistance to Refugees in Sudan’. The Government of Japan has long been a strong advocate of and contributor to providing humanitarian and various assistance to refugees worldwide and improving human security globally. Assisting refugees in Sudan remains one of the most critical humanitarian needs in this country. I sincerely hope that this project would contribute to improving access to basic human needs such as health and water for refugees and asylum seekers in White Nile State. The objective of this project perfectly aligns with our vision in enhancing basic human needs and human security.” Ambassador of Japan to Sudan, Mr. Takashi Hattori commented.

UNHCR explained that the funding would improve health and nutrition outcomes for refugees in White Nile State by supporting community-based management of acute malnutrition services for children and pregnant and lactating women. “The funding will also seek to improve access to primary healthcare services and referrals for secondary healthcare. In addition, the WASH sector will also be targeted through the provision of support to the operation and maintenance of WASH facilities to increase access to safe water”, UNHCR press release said.

UNHCR press release pointed out that Sudan was the second largest asylum country in Africa hosting over 1.1 million refugees and asylum-seekers. In 2023, UNHCR Sudan needs US$396 million to deliver an effective response and provide life-saving assistance and protection.

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