Meeting humanitarian needs on the Kenya border with Somalia

1.3 million Somalis are currently displaced and 3.5 million are in need of urgent humanitarian assistance, a 77 percent increase since January 2008. However the impact of the crisis inside Somalia on humanitarian needs elsewhere in the region, particularly Kenya, has received much less attention from regional governments, donors and the media. Kenya has been the host to the largest concentration of Somali refugees in the world for almost two decades. The three Dadaab camps- Ifo, Hagadera and Dagahaley- were built in Northeastern Province in 1991 to host 90,000 refugees. Long lacking adequate resources and international attention, Dadaab is currently one of the world’s oldest, largest and most congested refugee sites. The camp population has exploded along with the conflict in Somalia and now stands at close to 250,000 with over 60,000 new arrivals in 2008 alone, mostly from the conflict-affected areas of Mogadishu and Lower Juba.

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