Zambia designs program to empower communities hosting refugees

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LUSAKA, Dec. 16 (Xinhua) — The Zambia government said on Monday that it was rolling out a comprehensive refuge framework aimed at ensuring peaceful co-existence between the hosting communities and refugees.

Minister of Home Affairs Stephen Kampyongo said the program was meant to reduce tension between refugees and communities, adding that the current tension occured because some refugee camps had social amenities which were not available in communities.

He said the government was of the view that social amenities accorded to refugees should be shared with hosting communities to reduce social tensions, according to a release.

According to him, the government was implementing a program of local integration of refugees who were not willing to go back to their countries of origin and has since embarked on extensive awareness and intensive investigations before refugees could be integrated in local communities.

Zambia is hosting about 84,000 refugees from some neighboring countries in refugee camps.

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