By Taddeo Bwambale and Jeff Lule
UGANDA, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and the United Nations have signed an agreement to guide the return of Congolese refugees to their country.
The agreement was signed on Wednesday at Imperial Royale Hotel by Uganda’s state minister for relief, disaster preparedness and refugees, Musa Ecweru; DRC’s internal affairs minister, Richard Muyej Mangeze and the UNHCR Regional Representative in DRC, Stefano Severe.
Delegations from Uganda, DRC and the UN met in Kampala for three days on Monday to pave way for the return of Congolese refugees in a safe and dignified manner.
Displaced civilians will be returning to their homes in the areas of Beni, Rutshuru in North Kivu. Photo by Abou Kisige
Under the agreement, all parties resolved to provide assistance to refugees who voluntarily seek to return home.
Uganda currently hosts 184,837 refugees.
Speaking at the closure of the three-day tripartite meeting, Ecweru said the refugees would be provided with necessary information about return areas and programmes.
Mangeze said most areas in DRC previously held by rebel forces had been secured for refugees to return home.
Severe said the UN agency had said displaced civilians were returning to their homes in the areas of Beni, Rutshuru in North Kivu.