Two refugees killed during rioting at Kenya camp: UN

1st July 2011, Comments 0 comments

Two refugees were killed and a dozen injured in clashes with police during riots which broke out at the overcrowded refugee camp of Dadaab in Kenya, the UN refugee agency said Friday.

"Yesterday saw disturbances in the Dagahley section of the Dadaab refugee complex in Kenya," said Adrian Edwards, spokesman for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.

"Rioting broke out when police sought to disperse a crowd that was protesting an attempt to demolish illegal structures around a food distribution point.

"Teargas was used and later live gunshots. Our information is that two refugees died and around a dozen were injured," he added.

With a population of 370,000, Dadaab is the world's largest refugee camp even though it was built for just 90,000.

According to Doctors Without Borders, the number of people seeking refugee keeps swelling and Dadaab will house 450,000 refugees by the end of the year, or twice the population of Geneva.

With serious drought in the Horn of Africa, thousands of Somalis have arrived in recent weeks in search of food and water.

The UNHCR said it opened three emergency centres in Dadaab on June 6, and since then, some 27,000 people have sought help at the centres.

Somalis are also fleeing in huge numbers to Ethiopia. Some 55,000 have arrived there since January.

Two existing camps in Ethiopia's south-east, which were opened in April 2009 and February 2010, have also reached their full capacity, warned the UNHCR.

© 2011 AFP

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