United Nations

A/RES/50/149


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

9 February 1996
ORIGINAL:
ENGLISH


Fiftieth session
Agenda item 109


                  RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY

               [on the report of the Third Committee (A/50/632)]


            50/149.     Assistance to refugees, returnees and
                        displaced persons in Africa

      The General Assembly,

      Recalling its resolution 49/174 of 23 December 1994,

      Having considered the report of the Secretary-General  1/ and
the report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees,  2/

      Bearing in mind the fact that most of the affected countries are
least developed countries,

      Convinced of the necessity of strengthening the capacity within
the United Nations system for the implementation and overall
coordination of relief programmes for refugees, returnees and
displaced persons,

      Welcoming the prospects for voluntary repatriation and durable
solutions to the refugee problems throughout Africa,

      Recalling its resolution 49/7 of 25 October 1994, in which it
endorsed the convening of a regional conference for assistance to
refugees, returnees and displaced persons in the Great Lakes region,

      Taking into account resolution CM/Res.1588 (LXII) on refugees,
returnees and displaced persons in Africa, adopted by the Council of
Ministers of the Organization of African Unity at its sixty-second
ordinary session, held at Addis Ababa from 21 to 23 June 1995,  3/
      Recognizing the need for States to create conditions conducive to
the prevention of flows of refugees and displaced persons and to
voluntary repatriation,

      Bearing in mind that the majority of refugees and displaced
persons are women and children,

      1.    Takes note of the report of the Secretary-General 1/ and the
report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees; 2/

      2.    Notes with concern the effects of political instability,
internal strife, human rights violations, foreign intervention,
poverty and natural disasters, such as drought, in increasing the
number of refugees and displaced persons in some countries of Africa;

      3.    Expresses deep concern at the serious and far-reaching
consequences of the presence of large numbers of refugees and
displaced persons in the receiving countries and the implications for
their security, their long-term socio-economic development and the
environment;

      4.    Expresses its appreciation and strong support for those
African Governments and local populations which, in spite of the
general deterioration of socio-economic and environmental conditions,
as well as over-stretched national resources, continue to accept the
additional burdens imposed by increasing numbers of refugees and
displaced persons, in compliance with the relevant principles of
asylum;

      5.    Commends the Governments concerned for their sacrifices, for
providing assistance to refugees, returnees and displaced persons and
for their efforts to promote voluntary repatriation and other measures
taken to find appropriate and lasting solutions;

      6.    Expresses its gratitude to the international community for
the humanitarian assistance it has continued to render to refugees and
displaced persons and to the countries of asylum, and calls upon it to
continue to provide assistance to the millions of refugees and
displaced persons in Africa;

      7.    Expresses its concern regarding instances, in some parts of
Africa, where the fundamental principle of asylum is jeopardized as a
result of unlawful expulsion, refoulement, or other threats to life,
physical security, dignity and well-being;

      8.    Welcomes the strengthening of cooperation, at all levels,
between the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for
Refugees and the Organization of African Unity, and urges both
organizations, with relevant subregional bodies, United Nations and
non-governmental organizations, the international community and the
Governments concerned, to increase their efforts to address the root
causes, work out strategies and find durable solutions to the problems
of displacement in Africa;

      9.    Also welcomes the initiatives of the United Nations High
Commissioner for Refugees to implement General Assembly resolution
49/7, and endorses the Plan of Action adopted by the Regional
Conference on Assistance to Refugees, Returnees and Displaced Persons
in the Great Lakes Region, held at Bujumbura from 15 to
17 February 1995, as a framework for solution-oriented approaches to
the humanitarian problems in the Great Lakes region;

      10.   Calls upon the Office of the United Nations High
Commissioner for Refugees to intensify its protection activities by,
inter alia, supporting the efforts of African Governments through
appropriate training of relevant officers and other capacity-building
activities, disseminating information about refugee instruments and
principles and providing financial, technical and advisory services to
accelerate the enactment or amendment and implementation of
legislation relating to refugees;

      11.   Expresses its appreciation for the efforts of Governments
and for the important work being done by the Office of the United
Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, United Nations organizations,
the International Organization for Migration, non-governmental
organizations and other cooperating bodies on the implementation of
voluntary repatriation of refugees in Africa, and calls upon the
Office of the High Commissioner, in conjunction with the Organization
of African Unity and Governments concerned, subregional groupings and
other interested parties, actively to continue to seek sustainable
solutions to the refugee problem in Africa, in particular through
facilitating voluntary return in a dignified and orderly manner;

      12.   Appeals to Governments, United Nations and non-governmental
organizations and the international community to create conditions
that can facilitate the voluntary return and the early rehabilitation
and reintegration of refugees;

      13.   Commends the Governments of the Great Lakes region and the
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees on their initiatives to
promote repatriation within the framework of tripartite agreements on
voluntary repatriation of refugees in the region;

      14.   Encourages the Office of the United Nations High
Commissioner for Refugees to continue to cooperate with the office of
the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in the promotion
and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms in emergency
humanitarian situations in Africa;

      15.   Calls upon the Office of the United Nations High
Commissioner for Refugees, in conjunction with host Governments,
United Nations and non-governmental organizations and the
international community, to undertake an early assessment of the
negative impacts of large refugee concentrations on the host
communities, with a view to initiating timely and concrete measures to
prevent damage and to assist in its repair, especially damage caused
by mass refugee influxes to the environment and ecosystems in host
countries;

      16.   Notes with satisfaction the voluntary return of millions of
refugees to their homelands following the successful repatriation and
reintegration operations carried out by the Office of the United
Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, with the cooperation and
collaboration of many countries hosting refugees, and looks forward to
other programmes to assist the voluntary repatriation of all refugees
in Africa;

      17.   Expresses its concern about the long stay of refugees in
certain African countries, and calls upon the United Nations High
Commissioner for Refugees to keep under review her programmes in those
countries, taking into account the increasing requirements there;

      18.   Expresses its appreciation to the Secretary-General, the
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the specialized
agencies, the International Committee of the Red Cross, the
International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies,
donor countries and intergovernmental and non-governmental
organizations for their assistance in mitigating the plight of the
large number of refugees, returnees and displaced persons;

      19.   Expresses the hope that additional resources will be made
available for general refugee programmes to keep pace with refugee
needs;

      20.   Calls upon Governments, United Nations organizations,
non-governmental organizations and the international community as a
whole to strengthen the emergency response capacity of the Office of
the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees on the basis of the
experience of the emergency in Rwanda, and to continue providing
needed resources and operational support to Rwandese refugees and the
host countries until a permanent solution can be implemented;

      21.   Calls upon the international donor community to provide
material and financial assistance for the implementation of programmes
intended for the rehabilitation of the environment and infrastructure
in areas affected by refugees in countries of asylum;

      22.   Calls upon Member States and intergovernmental and
non-governmental organizations to continue to provide the necessary
support and financial assistance to the United Nations High
Commissioner for Refugees to enhance her capacities and abilities to
implement emergency operations, care and maintenance activities and
repatriation and reintegration programmes for the benefit of refugees,
returnees and, as appropriate, internally displaced persons;

      23.   Appeals to Member States and international and
non-governmental organizations to provide adequate financial, material
and technical assistance for relief and rehabilitation programmes for
the large number of refugees, voluntary returnees and displaced
persons and victims of natural disasters and to the affected
countries;

      24.   Requests all Governments and intergovernmental and
non-governmental organizations to pay particular attention to meeting
the special needs of refugee women and children;

      25.   Calls upon the Secretary-General, the United Nations High
Commissioner for Refugees, the Department of Humanitarian Affairs of
the Secretariat, United Nations humanitarian organizations, the
International Committee of the Red Cross, the International Federation
of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, regional and international
financial institutions, the International Organization for Migration
and non-governmental organizations to increase the capacity for
coordination and delivery of humanitarian emergency assistance and
disaster relief in general, with States and others concerned in
respect of asylum, relief, repatriation, rehabilitation and
resettlement of refugees, returnees and displaced persons, including
those refugees in urban areas;

      26.   Requests the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
to review her general programmes in Africa to take account of the
increasing requirements in that region and with a view to continuing
her efforts and expanding her activities in close collaboration with
the Organization of African Unity, regional organizations and
governmental and non-governmental organizations in Africa, in order to
consolidate aid and increase essential services to refugees, returnees
and displaced persons;

      27.   Requests the Secretary-General to submit a comprehensive and
consolidated report on the situation of refugees, returnees and
displaced persons in Africa to the General Assembly at its fifty-first
session, under the item entitled "Report of the United Nations High
Commissioner for Refugees, questions relating to refugees, returnees
and displaced persons and humanitarian questions", and an oral report
to the Economic and Social Council at its substantive session of 1996.


                                                          97th plenary meeting
                                                              21 December 1995


                                     Notes

1/          A/50/413.

2/          Official Records of the General Assembly, Fiftieth Session,
Supplement No. 12 (A/50/12).

3/          See A/50/647, annex I.

This document has been posted online by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA). Reproduction and dissemination of the document - in electronic and/or printed format - is encouraged, provided acknowledgement is made of the role of the United Nations in making it available.

Date last posted: 15 January 2000 16:15:30
Comments and suggestions: esa@un.org