Kenya has been freshly accused of violating international law by forcing refugees out of the world’s largest refugee camp.
These latest accusations come from the Norwegian Refugee Council which says that the deadline to close Dadaab must be lifted.
“The issue is that the focus on the returning of many as possible although the system of voluntary return is theoretically still voluntary actually because of the pressure that the refugees are feeling in order that they must go back means that they are joining the voluntary process even though they might not want to go back at this time”, said Neil Turner, NRC’s Country Director in Kenya
The Tripartite Agreement for the voluntary return of Somali refugees from Kenya was signed by the Kenyan and Somali governments and the UN’s refugee agency UNHCR in 2013.
Following Kenya’s government decision to close the camp this year on grounds that it had become a hive for planning terror attacks, both local and international actors have criticised the move.
The camp which is home to over 300,000 refugees was set up in 1991 to house families fleeing conflict in Somalia, and some people have been living there for more than 20 years.