Luena – The Ministry of Assistance and Social Welfare controls 111,814 Angolans that chose to live as refugees in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), after the first operation of voluntary and organised repatriation of refugees carried out from 2003 to 2007.
According to statistics data from the Welfare Ministry on the Angolan refugees to be repatriated as from the first half of 2011, which was made available to ANGOP, the second country of asylum for Angolans following the DRC is Zambia with a total of 27,073, followed by Namibia 5,600 and the Republic of Congo 2,652.
From the citizens who sought asylum in DRC, more than 43,000 expressed their intention to return to Angola, while there are 8,925 in Zambia and 2,500 in Namibia who expressed the same intention.
In the Republic of Congo 100 expressed their desire to adhere to the voluntary repatriation programme, while Botswana houses 506 Angolan refugees with 29 willing to return home.
According to the document, these numbers are based on the results of the registration, verification of nationality and profile of refugees, which was carried out among the governments of the five countries and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
The operation of repatriating Angolan refugees remaining in the neighbouring countries will begin during the current semester of 2010 and until the end of the same period about 10,000 families are expected to be transported by air and road, in accordance to the specificness of each province.