United Nations

A/50/506


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

4 October 1995

ORIGINAL:
ENGLISH


Fiftieth session
Agenda item 20 (b)


              STRENGTHENING OF THE COORDINATION OF HUMANITARIAN AND
              DISASTER RELIEF ASSISTANCE OF THE UNITED NATIONS,
              INCLUDING SPECIAL ECONOMIC ASSISTANCE:  SPECIAL
              ECONOMIC ASSISTANCE TO INDIVIDUAL COUNTRIES OR REGIONS

Special assistance to countries receiving
refugees from Rwanda

Report of the Secretary-General


CONTENTS

  Paragraphs  Page

I.  INTRODUCTION .........................................1 - 22

II.  GREAT LAKES REGION ...................................3 - 42

III.  REPUBLIC OF BURUNDI ..................................5 -133

IV.  REPUBLIC OF UGANDA ...................................14 -174

V.  UNITED REPUBLIC OF TANZANIA ..........................18 - 295

VI.  REPUBLIC OF ZAIRE ....................................30 -417

VII.  CONTRIBUTIONS BY MEMBER STATES .......................42 -479

VIII.  CONCLUDING OBSERVATIONS ..............................48 -5010







95-29870 (E)   201095/...
*9529870*
 I.  INTRODUCTION

1.  The present  report is submitted pursuant to General Assembly resolution
49/24 of  2  December 1994  on  special  assistance to  countries  receiving
refugees from Rwanda.  In that resolution, the  General Assembly, bearing in
mind the  serious crisis which  had shaken Rwanda  to its very  foundations,
expressed its  deep concern  about the  grave social,  economic, health  and
ecological impact of  the massive and unexpected presence of refugees in the
neighbouring countries.  It commended  the Governments  of Burundi,  Uganda,
the United Republic of Tanzania and Zaire for the sacrifices which they  had
made and for their  continuing commitment to do  their utmost to  assist the
refugees from  Rwanda, notwithstanding the  constraints which their  limited
resources placed on them, and urged  all States, intergovernmental and  non-
governmental  organizations,  and  international  financial and  development
institutions to  provide all  financial, technical  and material  assistance
possible  with a view to facilitating the restoration  of the basic services
destroyed in  the countries  receiving refugees  from Rwanda.   The  present
report  has been prepared  on the basis of  information received from United
Nations offices  in Burundi,  Uganda, the  United Republic  of Tanzania  and
Zaire by the end of August 1995.

2.  Despite progress made to normalize the country, the situation in  Rwanda
remains fragile.   Some 1.8 million Rwandan  refugees are still outside  the
country.      Continued   insecurity   prevents   their   repatriation   and
resettlement. The  presence of  military forces  and militia  of the  former
Government  among the refugees  has intimidated  them and  poses an external
threat to  the current Government  of Rwanda.   These forces  have allegedly
been  rearmed  and  retrained  in  neighbouring   countries.    The   forced
repatriation of refugees from Zaire to Rwanda and  Burundi between 19 and 23
August  1995 attested  to  the danger  and destabilizing  effects of  such a
large presence of refugees  close to Rwanda's borders.  It is an  indication
that the neighbouring countries, which have  been shouldering a heavy burden
by providing asylum to the refugees, have reached a limit.


II.  GREAT LAKES REGION

3.    The Regional  Conference  on  Assistance  to  Refugees, Returnees  and
Displaced Persons in the  Great Lakes Region  was held at Bujumbura from  12
to 17 February 1995.   Organized and chaired jointly by the Organization  of
African Unity (OAU)  and the Office of  the United Nations High Commissioner
for Refugees  (UNHCR), the Conference discussed  the issue  of assistance to
countries receiving  refugees from Rwanda.   The United Nations  Development
Programme (UNDP) was  requested to hold  a round  table of  donors aimed  at
tackling the  problems  of zones  that  were  seriously affected  by  damage
resulting  from the presence  of refugees  and displaced  persons within the
Great Lakes region, in  order to coordinate the  necessary action within the
framework of an integrated approach.

4.  UNDP sent an  exploratory mission to the region from  9 April to  23 May
1995.  It examined, in  particular, the impact of  the refugees' presence on
the environment,  and established that extensive  damage had  been caused to
the  ecosystems in  areas  of the  Kivu  region  of  eastern Zaire  and  the
wetlands  of the  Kagera River  basin in  the  United Republic  of Tanzania.
Small  projects  initiated by  UNHCR  and  the  German Technical  Assistance
Corporation (GTZ)  to mitigate the impact  of firewood  cutting, and another
by  UNHCR  in  cooperation  with the  International  Fund  for  Agricultural
Development (IFAD)  to  repair the  damage  on  the environment,  have  been
overwhelmed by the  sheer magnitude of  the refugee  problem in the  region.
UNDP  has  concluded  that  the  environmental  dimension   of  the  refugee
situation merits  and inter-agency assessment  to establish long-term  needs
and assistance to the affected countries.


III.  REPUBLIC OF BURUNDI

5.   At the  time that the Rwandan refugees  moved into Burundi, the country
had already been suffering the effects of its  own October 1993 crisis, with

a  great number  of internally  displaced  persons,  physical damage  to the
basic service infrastructure, and a crisis  of confidence that resulted in a
lower level  of efficiency in  the provision of  basic services.   Moreover,
throughout the past 22  months, Burundi has continued to suffer from  inter-
ethnic strife  and general  destabilization, with  negative consequences  in
terms of basic service infrastructure and delivery.

6.   The main negative effects of  the presence of the Rwandan refugees have
been on  the schools, where refugees  have stayed  temporarily pending other
arrangements, environmental  degradation owing  to the  high consumption  of
firewood, and  inflation in  the economies of  the urban centres  of Muyinga
and Ngozi.  Actions  by United Nations  agencies to alleviate the  situation
have  been taken  through  specific  programmes,  addressing  the  needs  of
Rwandan refugees and the affected Burundian population.

7.  The  following measures reflect the response  to both the effects of the
inflow of  approximately 200,000 Rwandan refugees  into Burundi,  and of the
internal crisis in the country.

8.  Funds have been  provided by UNHCR to assist  with reforestation and  to
reinforce water  and sanitation facilities in  the hospitals  of Kayanza and
Ngozi.  UNHCR is  also actively  involved  in  the rehabilitation  of public
schools   in  areas  where   refugees  are   living,  as  well   as  in  the
rehabilitation of  access roads  to the  camps.   In  addition to  providing
assistance  to approximately  200,000  refugees, UNHCR  has  been  assisting
220,000  returnees and displaced  persons and  5,000 urban  poor.  Secondary
school  and  higher  education  for  refugees   is  also  provided,  and   a
repatriation operation  of  former refugees  from  and  to Rwanda  has  been
implemented.  Approximately US$ 30 million has been raised for these tasks.

9.  The  United Nations Children's  Fund (UNICEF) is  providing basic  drugs
for  health centres  and has  integrated supplementary  feeding into  health
centre activities.    Efforts are  geared towards  reinforcing the  existing
health network  as well as integrating  preventive and  curative services of
health  and   nutrition.  It  provides   water  to  the   displaced/affected
population  through   a  tanker  delivery  system,   is  assisting  in   the
rehabilitation of water sources and in the exploitation of new sources,  and
monitors   the  quality  of  the   water.    It  is  building  latrines  and
rehabilitating such structures in health centres and schools.
  10.  Other UNICEF  activities include hygiene  education and  distribution
of equipment  and disinfectant.   In  order to  strengthen basic  education,
teachertraining  programmes  have  been developed.    The  development of  a
"peace  curriculum" has  been  initiated.   Finally,  UNICEF identifies  and
assists 14,000 Burundian unaccompanied children.   More than $10 million has
been expended in these efforts.

11.   The World Food Programme (WFP) is  providing general food distribution
to  more  than 200,000  internally  displaced  persons  as  well as  200,000
Rwandan refugees  in Burundi and 150,000  Rwandan and  Burundian refugees in
Zaire.    The  reduction  in  regional  food availability  has  led  WFP  to
implement  and  accelerated  reintegration  programme  for  the   internally
displaced.  In addition, its support  covers forestry (e.g., plantation  and
nursery),  infrastructure  rehabilitation,  including  houses,  schools  and
public  buildings,  support  to  cooperatives,   such  as  income-generating
activities, and road rehabilitation.

12.  The Food and Agriculture Organization of  the United Nations (FAO)  has
concentrated  its efforts  on  providing displaced  persons,  returnees  and
refugees  with  agricultural  tool  kits  and   seeds.    In  addition,  the
Organization  is involved in  reforestation and stock breeding.   A total of
$12 million has been allocated for these tasks.

13.   The World  Health Organization  (WHO) is  implementing a  four-pronged
assistance effort, totalling nearly $3.9 million.   Its efforts are  focused
on  strengthening   the  National   Epidemiological  Surveillance   Network,
assisting  in  the  prevention  and  control  of  communicable  diseases and

epidemics, supporting the provision of health  services to the most affected
provinces, and aiding in the prevention  and control of sexually transmitted
diseases.    It  also  provides  equipment  to  health  centres  in  certain
provinces.


IV.  REPUBLIC OF UGANDA

14.   The  total  refugee population  in  Uganda  as at  31  March 1995  was
333,550,  of which 6,390  were from  Rwanda.  The arrival  of Rwandan Tutsis
dates  back  to 1961.  Before  then,  Rwandans  moved  freely between  their
country  and Uganda  mainly as  immigrant  workers providing  manual labour.
The victory of the  Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF)  and the establishment of a
new  Government in Rwanda  in July  1994 prompted  Tutsi refugees  to return
home.  At the same time, Rwandan Hutu  refugees entered southern Uganda  and
settled  in Oruchinga (5,331)  and Nakivale  (1,059). These  are old refugee
settlements that were formerly occupied by Tutsi refugees.

15.   As cattle  herders, Rwandan  refugees live  a pastoral life  and hence
require considerable  area for migration  in search  of food  and water  for
their cattle. The departure  of Rwandan refugees has had a pervasive  impact
on  the  settlement  communities and,  to some  extent,  the community  as a
whole.  The socio-economic  impact has been noted in terms of a  substantial
decrease in the volume of livestock  and of agricultural production, as well
as in the deterioration in educational and health  facilities.  In addition,
there  has been  physical damage  to the  environment in  the form  of  soil
erosion,   the  deteriorating   quality  of   water  resources   and   other
environmental consequences.

 16.    There  appear to  be  few,  if  any,  specific  programmes aimed  at
facilitating the  restoration of basic  services adversely  affected by  the
influx  of  Rwandan  refugees.    However,  UNHCR  has  contributed  to  the
construction of  40 kilometres  of new road,  the repair of  existing roads,
the  procurement  of  tools  for  road   construction  and  the  payment  of
construction  staff.   WFP  has contracted  a  firm  to build  a 47  km road
between Bunagana and Kisoro.  It has also  contributed to the maintenance of
the  Masaka/Kampala  road in  order  to  mitigate the  damage  to  the  road
infrastructure by the frequent utilization of heavy WFP trucks.

17.  The Uganda Red Cross  plans to integrate health services  to be offered
to  both  refugees and  the  local  population.    It  also has  implemented
programmes  aimed at  encouraging the  refugees  to  plant trees  around the
camps in  order to  stem the  environmental degradation  resulting from  the
construction of refugee shelters.


V.  UNITED REPUBLIC OF TANZANIA

18.   More  than 700,000  refugees entered the  United Republic  of Tanzania
after  war  erupted in  Rwanda  in  1994.    With coordinated  international
support and the assistance of the  Tanzanian Government, these refugees were
processed successfully  and  settled  in  refugee camps  at  the  Tanzanian-
Rwandan border  area.  Their  presence  impacted  negatively  on  the  local
population and  in particular on  the area's infrastructure,  administrative
and   managerial  resources,  and  security.    The  depletion  of  fuelwood
resources  and deforestation,  the  contamination of  water  resources,  the
depletion of  ground water and  surface water, the  loss of  access to water
sources by villagers, and land degradation constitute serious  environmental
damage to  the area.   Women and  children were especially  affected by  the
depletion  of forest  resources and  the use of  limited water  resources in
terms of water and  fuelwood collection.   In the social and health  fields,
the presence of refugees generated concern  about the spread of communicable
diseases and  increased pressure on existing  facilities.   The prospects of
food   security  were  compromised  by  refugee  demands  in  areas  already
suffering from declining food production.  The large number of refugees  and
their needs and the limited resources available often  led to conflict.   In

addition   to  an   already   declining  infrastructure,   roadways  further
depreciated  as a  result  of heavy  use in  massive  relief efforts.    The
administrative and managerial capacity at  the district and  regional levels
was overstretched. Security costs increased inordinately.

19.   While at  the height  of the  Burundi refugee  emergency, in  December
1993, there were approximately 250,000 to  300,000 Burundian refugees in the
Kigoma  region, their  number declined  by the  end of  June 1995  to  about
24,000.

20.    On   13  December  1994,   high-level  delegations  representing  the
Government of the United Republic of  Tanzania, 11 bilateral donors, several
international organizations,  the  European Union,  United Nations  agencies
and non-governmental organizations  came together, for the first time  since
the  start of the refugee influx,  at Dar es Salaam for  a donor conference.
The  Prime  Minister  of  the  United  Republic  of  Tanzania  outlined  the
Government's policy on refugees, which stresses  the need to encourage their
return to countries of origin.   The Government also presented its programme
for  the rehabilitation of refugeeaffected communities in the Kagera region.
The programme covered  food security, environment, education, health,  water
and sanitation,  infrastructure, and regional  administration, all of  which
were enunciated as Government  priorities. In response  to the  Government's
request, the donors  pledged more than $40 million.   A review meeting  will
be held towards the end of 1995.

21.  United Nations  agencies and programmes have been active in the  Kagera
region  in  order  to  facilitate  the  restoration  of  the  basic services
destroyed  by  the  refugee  influx.   Some  of the  activities  pursued are
described below.

22.  UNDP has provided communication equipment to the  Regional and District
Commissioner's Office.  A project to  assist the regional administration  in
the coordination of the rehabilitation programme was approved.

23.   A joint mission was  fielded by UNDP,  the United Nations  Environment
Programme  (UNEP)  and  the United  Nations  Centre  for  Human  Settlements
(Habitat)  to the Kagera region from 16 to 24 May 1995, as a result of which
proposals  were made  relating to  (a) socio-economic  development and human
settlements,  (b) energy  problems  and  (c)  water supply  and  sanitation.
Donor funding is being sought for the proposals resulting from the mission.

24.   Funds have been  provided by UNHCR  for rehabilitation  and support to
refugee-affected  areas.    This  included  support  for  improved  forestry
practices and  improved fuel  stoves, which  have been  introduced to  local
communities;  the rehabilitation  of water  sources;  the drilling  of  bore
holes;  and the farming of peat as cooking fuel and the use of papyrus as an
alternative construction  material, which have  been implemented to  protect
wood resources.   Furthermore, local schools  and the  Kigoma stadium, which
were damaged during their temporary use  as refugee accommodation, have been
repaired.   Support has  been provided  to the  police force  in the  Kagera
region in  the form  of vehicles,  incentives, telecommunication  equipment,
accommodation,  office equipment  and  buildings,  training and  operational
costs.

25.   UNICEF has provided kits  composed of supplementary drugs, and medical
equipment  to  hospitals   and  health  centres  in  the  districts  hosting
refugees.

26.    Funds  have   been  provided  by  IFAD  to  a  project  focusing   on
environmental conservation and rehabilitation, and on the rehabilitation  of
the physical infrastructure and support for the local government.

27.  WFP has  provided 2,000 tons  of food to the local  population affected
by  the  influx of  refugees.   Within  the  context  of  the Rwanda/Burundi
regional project, the  United Republic of Tanzania plays  a major role as  a
transit country for commodities along the  southern corridor.  This corridor

is  a major artery  for humanitarian  assistance to  the refugee settlements
not only in  the United Republic of Tanzania, but also to  those situated in
eastern Zaire.    WFP relief  commodities  are  largely transported  by  the
Tanzania Railway Cooperation (TRC). Assistance will be  provided to increase
the capacity of TRC.

28.  A mission  has been fielded by  FAO to prepare agricultural development
proposals in the refugee-affected districts of the  Kagera region.  A report
containing proposals  and funding requirements is  being finalized and  will
be presented to donors.

29.  WHO has sent two epidemiologists to conduct studies.


VI.  REPUBLIC OF ZAIRE

30.  As of  August 1995,  there were some 1.1  million refugees in camps  in
and  around Goma  in northern  Kivu, and  Uvira  in southern  Kivu.   It  is
estimated that the  refugees make  up more  than 30 per  cent of the  people
living in the two Kivu  provinces.  Such a high  proportion of refugees  has
frequently  led to  tension and  conflict  with the  local population.    In
addition, elements of the  former Rwandan army and militia who have not been
disarmed  have  contributed  to  the  high  level  of  insecurity  along the
borders.   Their presence  is a  threat to  the people  and their  property,
particularly as  they do  not receive  humanitarian assistance  and have  to
survive on their own.

31.    On 19  August  1995,  Zairian  authorities  forcibly repatriated  181
Rwandan  refugees from  Goma to  Rwanda.   By 23  August, more  than  15,000
Rwandan and  Burundian refugees had  been expelled.   All 11  camps, with an
appropriate population  of 140,000 refugees, run  by UNHCR  in Zaire's Uvira
area, were emptied after refugees fled into the surrounding hills to  escape
forced repatriation,  thus deepening  the ongoing refugee crisis  in eastern
Zaire.   On 23  August, the Security  Council called on  Zaire, in spite  of
considerable  difficulties, to host  the refugees  and, taking  into account
the important contribution  Zaire had already made concerning the  refugees,
to  stand by  its humanitarian obligations and  stop forcible repatriations.
A  day  later, Zaire  stopped  the  forced  expulsion  of refugees,  thereby
considerably  easing the  situation.   The Secretary-General  requested  the
United Nations High Commissioner for  Refugees to undertake a mission to the
region to engage  in urgent  discussions with  the Government  of Zaire  and
neighbouring States with a view to resolving the refugee situation.

32.   Beyond the humanitarian  crisis resulting from the  flood of refugees,
an environmental  crisis is  threatening the ecological  balance in  eastern
Zaire.  The  environmental problems  are  especially  acute in  the  Virunga
National  Park, a  World  Heritage site  that is  rich  in rare  species  of
mammals  and birds.   It  is  situated within  walking distance  of  several
refugee camps.   It  is estimated  that 30,000  refugees forage in  the Park
daily, emerging with loads of wood for fuel and shelter.

33.   Owing  to the  severity of  the  refugee situation,  the international
community has  been focusing  its assistance  on  covering the  humanitarian
needs of the refugees.   However, whenever possible, efforts have been  made
to assist the local population and to protect the environment.

34.  Assistance rendered by United  Nations agencies and programmes included
the following measures.  As  a follow-up to the Bujumbura  Plan of Action of
February 1995, UNDP is responsible for  the coordination of an  inter-agency
mission, which  will visit  the Kivu  region in  the autumn of  1995 to  (a)
finalize the assessment  of the impact  of the refugees and  other displaced
persons on  local communities; (b) define  the needs  and propose priorities
in the  rehabilitation of the affected  populations and  areas; (c) estimate
costs  associated  with  this  rehabilitation; and  (d)  help  formulate  an
integrated programme  to address  the negative  effects, already  identified
and  attributed  to  the presence  of the  refugees  in the  Kivu provinces.

Those effects  are: (a)  deforestation and  poaching for  food and fuel  and
trading by the refugees; (b) serious  deterioration and saturation of  major
facilities, roads, airports,  housing, schools and hospitals and  dispensary
facilities;  (c) crowding out and disorganization of  the health facilities;
(d)  degradation  of  the  educational  system;  (e)  drastic  decrease   in
productivity in agriculture,  livestock and fishing, causing shortages;  (f)
energy shortages; (g) water  misuse and pollution,  and sanitation problems;
(h)  insecurity  of  persons  and  their   belongings;  (i)  delays  in  the
reorganization and decentralization  of the participation process in  public
decision-making.

35.   Efforts have  been made by  UNHCR to  diminish the  illegal cutting of
trees in the Virunga National Park  and on private lands  throughout eastern
Zaire.  In order to counter  the damage to forest resources, funds have been
made available  for the supply  and transportation of  firewood to camps  in
eastern Zaire.   In addition, several  forest reserves  have been identified
that  could be safely used  for the supply  of fuelwood.   It is anticipated
that the  production of  wood  stoves  will reduce  the amount  of  firewood
required by the refugees for cooking purposes.

36.  Although a  number of water systems  have been established,  efforts to
increase the storage and distribution capacity  will continue as the present
supply is below UNHCR standards.   Water supply and purification  activities
undertaken in Goma benefit not only refugees but  are extended to the  local
population  as well.  In Bukavu, the drinking water  system that was used to
supply the  refugee sites in the  region is being  rehabilitated so that  it
benefits  not  only  refugees  but  also   the  local  population.    Health
programmes for refugees  also cover the  needs of the local  population when
no alternative facilities are available.   Sanitation assistance is given to
local hospitals and schools.

37.  Funds have  been provided by UNICEF for vaccination programmes for  the
population   of  southern   Kivu,  water   and   sanitation  rehabilitation,
assistance to affected schools, assistance to local unaccompanied  children,
and drugs to Zairian health structures.

38.   The strategic  roads that had  already been  deteriorating before  the
influx of refugees into southern and  northern Kivu have been  rehabilitated
by  WFP   to  facilitate  the  transportation   of  people   and  goods  for
humanitarian purposes.

39.  Since 1993, an emergency cattle vaccination programme  (in northern and
southern Kivu) has been carried out by FAO.

40.  Funds have  been provided by the United Nations Educational, Scientific
and  Cultural  Organization  (UNESCO)  for a  protection  programme  in  the
Virunga National Park and a radio  broadcasting programme aimed at spreading
messages of peace.

 41.  An  epidemiological surveillance system for the Great Lakes region has
been established by WHO and a sanitation officer has been fielded.


VII.  CONTRIBUTIONS BY MEMBER STATES

42.    As  General  Assembly  resolution  49/24  focuses  on  the assistance
rendered by  the international  community with  a view  to facilitating  the
restoration  of the  basic  services destroyed  in  the  countries receiving
refugees  from Rwanda, to  the extent  possible, the  present section covers
only that  assistance.  Information related  to assistance  provided for the
refugees  is found  in the  report  submitted  pursuant to  General Assembly
resolution 49/23.   The following Member  States have  submitted information
on  special assistance  to  countries  receiving refugees  from  Rwanda,  in
accordance with General Assembly resolution 49/24.

43.   In 1994,  the Government  of Finland contributed  1.6 million  markkaa

through the United Nations  for Burundi and  2.5 million Fmk through  UNICEF
and Medecins sans frontieres for Zaire.

44.  Since  July 1994, the Government  of Germany has contributed  emergency
aid for Rwanda refugees in  the amount of 62 million deutsche mark for  both
Zaire and the  United Republic of  Tanzania.   It has  assisted in  drinking
water  treatment and  distribution,  and  in the  construction of  latrines.
This aid  has also benefited the  local population.   Specifically, a DM  30
million programme  was launched  to eliminate refugee-caused  damage in  the
Kivu  area.    The  programme  included  measures  designed  to  protect the
environment  and   natural  resources,   such  as   reforestation  and   the
introduction of  a concept to protect  the KahuziBiega  and Virunga National
Parks, and to rehabilitation the Goma-Bukavu road.

45.    For the  United  Republic  of Tanzania,  the  Government  of  Germany
contributed DM 7.5  million to refugees camps, of which DM 5 million was for
the rehabilitation of  water supply systems in the camps and the surrounding
areas.

46.   Through the International Peace  Cooperation Corps,  the Government of
Japan  has  provided  to  Zaire  medical  equipment  for  the  Goma  General
Hospital,  laboratory  equipment  for  the  AMI-Kivu Laboratory,  scholastic
materials for  eight primary schools, trees  for reforestation and  vehicles
for the AMI-Kivu Laboratory and the  Centre of Research in  Natural Science.
The  contribution amounted to 31.7 million yen.   In addition, it dispatched
volcanologists in  late 1994 to  observe Mount Nyiragongo  in the Goma  area
which was  threatening to explode.   A contribution  of 3.5  million yen was
made  to the  Volcanic  Laboratory  in Goma.    For the  United Republic  of
Tanzania,  supplies of  canned fish  were  donated  to the  local population
seriously affected by the flow of refugees.

47.   The Government  of the United  Kingdom of Great  Britain and  Northern
Ireland  has  taken  into account  environmental  and  economic concerns  of
affected populations in Zaire, the United  Republic of Tanzania, Uganda  and
Burundi in determining support to non-governmental organizations and  United
Nations  agencies administering humanitarian  aid to  the refugees.   In the
United Republic  of Tanzania, it  provided 100,000 pounds  to buy beans  for
the  refugee camps  from Tanzanian  wholesalers,  and  began to  implement a
project, with  Help  Age  International, at  a cost  of  100,000 pounds,  to
provide care  for  older  and  disabled  people  in Kiragwe  in  the  Kagera
district.


VIII.  CONCLUDING OBSERVATIONS

48.  Despite the considerable progress  made in Rwanda in rehabilitating the
country and improving its security, the  latest forced expulsion of  Rwandan
and  Burundian refugees  from  Zaire  demonstrates  that the  crisis,  which
engulfed  the Great  Lakes  region  for more  than a  year, continues.   The
urgent need  for more  vigorous and  concerted action  by the  international
community to assist in stabilizing the region is obvious.

49.   The  international community,  during  the  period under  review,  has
extended massive assistance  to more than 2  million people affected by  the
crisis  in  Rwanda.    Whereas  the  focus  has  been on  the  provision  of
humanitarian  assistance  to  those  people,  the  countries  receiving  the
refugees,  despite   their   limited   resources,  have   made   substantial
contributions by accepting the refugees and  assisting in catering to  their
essential  needs, while  experiencing rising  social tension  and  suffering
nearly   irreparable  environmental  degradation,   notably  in  the  United
Republic of Tanzania and Zaire.

50.    The international  community will  have  to  lend its  strong support
through  assistance  to countries  of asylum  to repair  infrastructural and
environmental  damage and  through  support to  countries of  origin towards
repatriation, rehabilitation  and reconstruction.   The  commitment of,  and

the   financial  support   from,  the   international  community   will   be
indispensable.   But  there will  also  be  a need  for sustained  political
pressure on  all countries  in the  region to  honour  their commitments  in
agreeing to  a strategy of accelerated,  organized and  voluntary return and
subsequent reintegration.


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Date last posted: 18 December 1999 16:30:10
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