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After we sounded the alarm in May 2011, that 5,600 southern Sudanese were stranded in a transit facility south of Khartoum that was built for 800 people, agencies provided transportation to help them return to South Sudan.
In March 2011, two communities in Equateur province in the DR Congo signed a non-aggression pact ending more than a year of deadly conflict. We are pleased that peace has arrived after the UN and other agencies followed RI’s recommendation to support reconciliation efforts.
Then in August 2011, as the new UN peacekeeping mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) was being formed, RI was instrumental in pushing the UN Security Council to prioritize the protection of civilians and authorize the greatest possible number of troops.
For six years, RI has continued to promote the human rights of the some twelve million people worldwide who lack citizenship. These stateless people are deprived of accessing basic services and exercising their political and civil rights. By prompting positive change in the UN system and strengthening US government attention to the issue, the US refugee bureau gave $320,000 to UN efforts to identify people at risk of statelessness in the Sudan. The US Senate also introduced an amendment to legislation that would create a legal pathway to citizenship for stateless people in the United States. Furthermore, the UNHCR pledged greater attention to stateless people during field visits and requested that the UN General Assembly support efforts to prevent statelessness.
As a result of our advocacy on behalf of the millions of people who have been displaced by the conflict in Colombia, in 2009 the U.S. Congress increased funding for Colombian refugees in nearby countries. This included support for Ecuador’s Enhanced Registration Process, a key component of that country’s refugee policy reform.
In line with our recommendations, in 2009 the U.S. provided substantial funding to the UN Refugee Agency’s Iraq programs and supported programs that prevent and respond to violence against displaced women. The U.S. also continued its resettlement program, admitting over 18,800 Iraqis last year.
Refugees International led the call to increase assistance to displaced Iraqis and in 2009 the House of Representatives passed legislation calling for stronger policies to protect and assist displaced Iraqis and to encourage the Government of Iraq to actively address the problem.