Some refugees and asylum seekers, including women and children, have been gathering in front of UNHCR offices in Pretoria and Cape Town since 08 October. We acknowledge the issues they raised, including employment and self-reliance, documentation, and personal security concerns.
UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, is working closely with the South African authorities to continue providing protection through the issuance of appropriate identity documentation, to facilitate access to health care, education and employment opportunities for all refugees and asylum seekers. We have also been increasing our capacity and that of our partner organizations to meet immediate needs as well asengage with persons of concern through community outreach activities.
We are grateful to the South African government for the on-going collaboration with UNHCR in the provision of international protection to those in need as well as finding immediate and long-term solutions for refugees and asylum seekers - most living in host communities who also face many socio-economic challenges.
South Africa is hosting close to 268,000 refugees and asylum seekers, mainly from Somalia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Ethiopia, among others.
Source: UN Information Centre in Pretoria (UNIC).