1st October 2020
Make a Donation

More than 6,000 refugees returned home between July and August

Author: Jale Richard | Published: Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Returnees arrive by a barge from Sudan to Jonglei state | File photo

More than 6,000 refugees have returned home from neighboring countries in the last two months, the government and the UN refugee agency says.

In a statement issued yesterday, the Relief and Rehabilitation Commission and UNHCR say they verified the returns of 25, 448 in July and August.

The figure includes 6, 144 people who spontaneously returned in July and August.

However, 19, 304 others who came back since January were only verified in their return locations – mostly to Eastern Equatoria State – during these last two months.

This brings the total of South Sudanese refugees who have returned to South Sudan in a self-organized manner since November 2017 to 326, 481.

According to UNHCR, some 205, 795 of them returned after the signing of the 2018 Revitalized Peace Agreement and 30, 281 others since the outbreak of COVID-19 in the region.

The returns in July and August were mainly attributed to family reunion cases, ease of transportation from Khartoum to South Sudan.

Many returned to Unity State through Panakuach border crossing point, and relaxation of border restrictions – especially at Tsertenya, Lobone, in Eastern Equatoria.

Others returned to Bentiu, Mayom, Maiwut, Fashoda, Panyikang and Magwi Counties.

UNHCR says the search for livelihood opportunities to complement food needs, after the reduction of the food rations in Uganda’s refugee camps, was the major reason many households are returning to South Sudan.

It states that the majority of spontaneous refugee returnees use informal border crossing points to get back to the country.

Support Eye Radio, the first independent radio broadcaster of news, information & entertainment in South Sudan.

Make a monthly or a one off contribution.