Somali refugee leader killed in Kenya camp: UN

30th December 2011, Comments 0 comments

Gunmen shot and killed a Somali refugee leader at the Dadaab refugee complex in northern Kenya, the UN refugee agency said on Friday.

The chairperson of the Community Peace and Security Team in Hagadera camp was shot as he was entering his compound around 7:45 pm (1645 GMT) on Thursday evening," the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said in a statement.

"Refugees rushed him to the hospital in Hagadera camp. Despite all efforts he passed away early this morning while being evacuated to Nairobi."

The victim was shot several times and the gunmen reportedly escaped.

UNHCR officials in Nairobi declined to give the victim's name, citing concerns for his family's security.

The team he headed cooperates with local police and NGOs to ensure security in Hagadera, which is part of the Dadaab complex, some 100 kilometres (60 miles) from the Somali border.

High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres voiced his "deep regret" about the "senseless" killing.

Dadaab is the world's largest refugee camp, sheltering more than 460,000 people.

Conflict, drought and famine has seen 295,000 people flee Somalia this year, according to the UNHCR -- more than half of them ending up in Dadaab.

But since October, when two Spaniards working for Doctors without Borders (Medecins sans Frontieres - MSF) were seized by gunmen in Dadaab, growing insecurity has crippled the ability of aid agencies to deliver relief in the camps.

© 2011 AFP

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