Botswana Commended Over Asylum Seekers

A group of Botswana non-governmental organisations (NGOs) have commended the government for declaring that a group of Eritrean soccer players seeking political asylum in the country should go through the normal application process.
In a joint press statement, the NGOs pointed out that they are convinced that the Botswana government is committed to international, regional and national human rights standards in accordance with the country’s membership of the African Union and the United Nations.

Municipality Closes Last Refugee Camp

The eThekwini municipality has announced the closure of the last camp in Durban for those displaced by xenophobic violence.

The Chatsworth camp was home to foreign nationals who were displaced during the violent attacks earlier this year.

City spokesperson, Tozi Mthethwa, says the foreign nationals were informed about the closure, adding that, “The aim of establishing the interim shelter was to protect the displaced African immigrants from the then volatile situation they faced back in their communities."

Call to Rethink of Operation Fiyela

Human rights activists, Lawyers for Human Rights (LHR), has secured a court order in the Johannesburg High Court halting the deportation of those held at Lindela repatriation centre for two weeks.

After LHR secured a court order allowing its lawyers access to their clients late‚ Johannesburg police station commanders refused to comply with it over the weekend.

30 000 to March Against Xenophobia

Controversial Bishop Paul Verryn‚ Professor Adam Habib, vice-chancellor at University of the Witwatersrand and expelled Congress of South African Trade Unions general secretary, Zwelinzima Vavi, are among those confirmed to address the People’s March Against Xenophobia‚ which takes place in Johannesburg on Thursday.

In a press statement, People's March Against Xenophobia points out that the march is being organised by “an emergency coalition convened to confront the horrors of xenophobia in South Africa‚ taking a stand to denounce the violence and embrace unity.”

SA Urged to Investigate Soweto Lootings

The United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) in South Africa says it is concerned about the recent spate of violence and looting in Soweto that mainly affects foreigners and asylum seekers.

UNHCR spokesperson, Tina Ghelli, says they will together with their non-governmental organisation (NGO) partners be speaking to community leaders as well undertaking a study of the shops affected by the looting.

Minister Favours SAHRC Office at Lindela

Following numerous reports of abuse, Home Affairs Minister, Malusi Gigaba, has asked the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) to establish an office at the Lindela Repatriation Centre.
This month the home affairs portfolio committee convened a meeting at which parliamentarians called for ‘a special meeting’ with the department and the SAHRC to deal with issues regarding Lindela Repatriation Centre.

Refugee Family’s Grant Card Rejected

A Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) family, who are refugees in South Africa, were left cash-strapped for months after their children’s social grant card was rejected several times at South African Social Security Agency (SASSA).

The father, who is concerned that someone was fraudulently collecting his family’s grants, says his five South African-born children aged between 10 months and 10 years were approved to receive the grants, but have not received anything for months.

South Africa Could Deport Refugees

About 2 000 Angolan refugees - many of whom have been living in South Africa for as long as 18 years - face deportation following the withdrawal of their refugee status.

Nationals of at least three other African countries are next on the list in what is believed to be government’s new strategy to repatriate refugees once peace and stability have returned to their countries.

The Department of Home Affairs officials confirmed this week that refugees from Liberia‚ Rwanda and Sierra Leone could also face deportation.


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