For nearly 20 years, UNHCR has cooperated with and supported the Government of Kenya’s efforts to maintain law and order in and around the refugee camps and to provide security in the area. This has led to improved protection for refugees and host communities, and preserved the humanitarian and civilian character of the institution of asylum and of the refugee camps.
To address specific national security concerns with regard to law and order more effectively, a joint Government and UNHCR initiative, the Security Partnership Project (SPP), was launched in 2010. The core aims of the SPP are:
To reinforce the security environment in the refugee camps and surrounding hosting areas with an enhanced police presence as well as through community policing;
To maintain the civilian and humanitarian character of the institution of asylum and refugee camps in Kenya by overseeing and managing cross-border movements of people and their property through the establishment of an operational Liboi Screening and Reception Centre at the Kenya-Somalia border; and
To secure the humanitarian space, workers and assets for the effective delivery of essential services and material assistance to refugees.
The project covers the refugee camps (and their extensions) in Dadaab and Kakuma, as well as reception and screening facilities, transit corridors and surrounding refugee hosting areas. In April 2011, the Government of Kenya and UNHCR signed a Memorandum of Understanding governing the project, which is for an initial period of three years and subject to an annual review as and when necessary.