Global Policy Forum

UN-Led Team Heads to Ethiopia, Eritrea to Review Plight of Internally Displaced

Africa News
October 16, 2000

A team of concerned partners led by the United Nations is headed to the Horn of Africa to review the plight of internally displaced people in Ethiopia and Eritrea. The UN Special Coordinator on Internal Displacement, Dennis McNamara, will lead the group of representatives from humanitarian agencies and non-governmental organizations comprising the one-week mission, which sets out tomorrow. They are part of an inter-agency network set up to confront the problems faced by people who have been forced by conflicts and human rights abuses to flee within the borders of their countries. Up to 25 million people are affected worldwide.

The mission is expected to conduct a series of field visits to displacement sites in Ethiopia and Eritrea. The delegation will also meet with government authorities in Addis Ababa and Asmara.

Meanwhile, the UN Mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea (UNMEE) announced today that its new Officer-in-Charge, Yogesh Saksena, has begun work in Asmara after arriving there on Tuesday. Mr. Saksena is slated to lead UNMEE -- the UN's newest peacekeeping operation -- until Botswanan Ambassador Legwaila Joseph Legwaila takes the helm as the Secretary- General's Special Representative.

Mr. Saksena comes to the Mission with 10 years of extensive experience on the military and civilian sides of UN peacekeeping operations. In addition to serving with the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations at Headquarters, Mr. Saksena worked for UN peace efforts in Angola, Tajikistan, Sierra Leone and East Timor. Mr. Saksena began his military career with the Indian Army in 1964, retiring with the rank of Brigadier-General.

More Information on Ethiopia and Eritrea


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