Rwanda + 1 more

Government grants prima facie refugee status to Burundian refugees

News and Press Release
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The Government of Rwanda has resolved to grant Prima Facie refugee status to Burundians who continue to flee to Rwanda.

The decision was taken considering the overwhelming number of Burundians who continue to cross the border to seek safe haven to Rwanda whereby the daily average has gone over 800 refugees.

The decision to grant Prima facie Refugee status to Burundians is in accordance with Article 13 of the Law Relating to Refugees in Rwanda and the 1951 Convention Relating to refugees where by population fleeing in mass influx are unconditionally granted refugee status.

As of Thursday April 23, 2015, the number of Burundians refugees received in Rwanda had reached 11,000, which complicates the procedure to determine their status at individual basis.

New camp established

In order to meet basic protections requirement for the influx of Burundian refugees, the government have also established a new camp in Mahama in Kirehe District to avoid the congestion in existing reception centres mainly Bugesera and Nyanza.

The relocation of Burundian refugees from reception centres to the new camp started on Tuesday April 21, 2015 with those hosted in Nyamiyaga camp in Nyanza District in the Southern Province.

The exercise will continue till all refugees are relocated from all existing transit centres to the new camp.

The relocation of Burundian refugees in Mahama refugee’s camp is meant to resettle them far from the borders of their country to comply with the International refugees convention.