KHARTOUM, May 18 (Xinhua) — The Humanitarian Aid Commission (HAC) in Sudan’s White Nile State said on Thursday that the number of South Sudanese refugees in the state has amounted to 140,000, according to the latest statistics by Sudan’s Commission of Refugees.
“The White Nile State has established eight camps to accommodate the continuing influxes of refugees from South Sudan,” Mohamed Idriss Al-Sheikh, HAC commissioner in White Nile State, told journalists visiting the state.
He reiterated that local authorities are providing all services, including food, education, health and water, to the refugees.
The official also said there were no security problems inside the refugee camps in White Nile, denying previous reports about spread of diseases such as watery diarrhoea because of the intensive presence of refugees.
The White Nile State has been witnessing continued influxes of refugees fleeing the war and famine in South Sudan.
Al-Alagaiya refugee camp of al-Jabalain locality, some 110 km south of Rabak, the capital city of White Nile State, is accommodating some 15,000 South Sudanese refugees.
“About 5,000 South Sudanese families live in the camp making a total of around 15,000 refugees,” Abbasher Al-Nour, deputy chairman of Al-Alagaiya refugee camp, told Xinhua.
“The HAC provides all necessary services for the population in the camp, where until now, matters are progressing well without any security problems. There is a high level of coordination between all the security bodies, the HAC authorities, the commission of refugees, the UN and national organizations,” he noted.
Meanwhile, Martha Simon, a South Sudanese refugee living in Al-Alagaiya camp, told Xinhua that her family are feeling at home at the camp.
“We have been living in this camp for about three years. Everything is good and we do not feel like strangers because we were part of Sudan and we still feel like we are home,” she said.
Adam Joub, another South Sudanese refugee, also expressed contentment.
“We headed to Sudan which received us without any complications. We receive all the necessary services and security is available. Our children receive proper education. We thank the Government of Sudan for this generosity,” he said.
Earlier this week, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) said around 20,000 South Sudanese refugees arrived in Sudan’s border areas within one week to flee the violence at the Upper Nile area near Sudan’s White Nile state.
“Nearly 20,000 South Sudanese refugees reportedly arrived in White Nile and South Kordofan states between April 29 and May 6,” the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in its most recent report citing latest refugee figures by UNHCR.
About 1,300 refugees arrive daily in White Nile from Shilluk area through Joda and Migainis areas in Upper Nile, according to the report.
OCHA expected arrival of 180,000 new refugees in Sudan by the end of 2017.
Sudanese authorities put the number of South Sudanese refugees in Sudan at about 600,000 and expect continued influxes from its violence-plagued neighboring country.