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Libyan refugees thankful for Rwanda's reception


The first batch of African refugees and asylum-seekers from Libya have been settled into accommodation at transit centers in Rwanda.

Zainab Yousef is among the 66 Africans and recounts her journey to the East African nation.

“I was afraid. I am young and I have a small baby. Sometimes people would come and ask me whether she really is my baby and I thought they would take her away. I thought of escaping, but because of the baby I could not take the risk”, she told the United Nations’ refugee agency.

Her hope is that her baby will receive an education.

“I need for my child to get the necessary vaccinations and medical support. I want to offer her education, shelter and other basic rights. I also never had a chance to go to school. I would like to have an education”, Yousef added.

Locals are beyond ready to lend a helping hand.Richard Mutabazi is mayor of Bugesera district.

“We don’t have to have a lot to give. We can share the little resources we have with a big heart”, he said.

Rwanda’s agreement to take in 500 people who have been trapped in Libya, at risk of rocket attacks and rape, has raised concerns. It is unclear how long they might be held here and how free they are to leave.


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