Last Updated: Friday, 21 November 2014, 13:47 GMT

UN completes shelter project for Kyrgyz left homeless by ethnic violence

Publisher UN News Service
Publication Date 3 December 2010
Cite as UN News Service, UN completes shelter project for Kyrgyz left homeless by ethnic violence, 3 December 2010, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4cfde6612c.html [accessed 23 November 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) today announced the completion of its emergency shelter programme in southern Kyrgyzstan, which provides temporary housing for over 13,400 people whose homes were damaged or destroyed during ethnic clashes in June.

"Getting people into proper accommodation before winter has been an important goal," said UNHCR spokesperson Adrian Edwards.

"Early completion of this programme has been important, and in our view owes much to the commitment and coordination there has been with our partner organizations, as well as the support of the Kyrgyz President, government and authorities."

A total of around 2,000 homes were damaged, with nearly 1,700 being completely destroyed, in the deadly violence that rocked the southern region of the country in June. In all, the violence cost the lives of over 400 people and displaced some 375,000 more, with 75,000 briefly crossing the border into Uzbekistan.

Mr. Edwards said UNHCR was directly responsible for the construction of four out of every five of the transitional homes, which are built on the foundations of damaged and destroyed property.

"All of the transitional homes are warm and seismically safe," he said.

The construction of the shelters was completed just ahead of the winter, allowing people to occupy the homes just a few days before nighttime temperatures are forecast to start hitting minus 10 degrees Celsius and allowing UNHCR to concentrate on other forms of aid.

"Now that this emergency shelter work is completed, our focus will shift to reconciliation, in particular promoting rule of law and human rights. The situation in this part of Kyrgyzstan remains fragile," said Mr. Edwards.

UNHCR expects that in 2011 it will continue to help provide better access to rights, basic and essential services, the replacing of personal documents and promoting livelihoods of Kyrgyz people, at a cost of around $11.4 million.

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