UN refugee agency commends Ethiopia's open-door policy to refugees

ADDIS ABABA, Sept. 19 (Xinhua) -- United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Filippo Grandi has commended Ethiopia for its open-door policy and hospitality toward refugees.

Grandi made the remarks when meeting with Ethiopian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Demeke Mekonnen in New York, the United States, on the sidelines of the ongoing 78th session of the UN General Assembly, the Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement on Tuesday.

The high commissioner, in particular, praised the East African country for receiving and hosting the Sudanese refugees "in a very human manner," according to the ministry.

Commending Ethiopia for its open-door policy toward refugees, Grandi also appealed to donors to scale up their support for refugees in Ethiopia.

Amid the ongoing security situation in neighboring Sudan, the number of people arriving in Ethiopia from Sudan had reached 78,598 as of Aug. 29, according to recent figures from the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

During his visit to Ethiopia in February, Grandi reaffirmed UNHCR's commitment to supporting the humanitarian response for refugees and internally displaced people in Ethiopia and to working toward achieving long-term solutions, including for those displaced by drought and the effects of climate change.

Ethiopia, Africa's second most populous country, hosts more than 823,000 refugees and asylum seekers, mostly from South Sudan, Somalia and Eritrea. According to the UNHCR, the majority of refugees and asylum seekers in Ethiopia live in 24 refugee camps established in five regional states across the country.

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