Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees: Second International Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa (ICARA II): Report of the Secretary-General - Addendum

General Assembly
5 November 1984

Thirty-ninth session
agenda item 100 (b)


1.         In paragraph 15 of the Programme of Action of the Second International Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa (A/39/402, annex, sect. II), the Secretary-General was requested to submit to the General Assembly at its thirty-ninth session a first report on the results of the Conference as well as action taken or planned to follow-up on the process initiated at the Conference.

2.         The report of the Secretary-General on the work of the Conference was issued on 22 August 1984 (A/39/402).


3.         In order to keep the General Assembly informed of the international response to the appeal made at the Conference, the Secretary-General addressed a letter to all Governments on 17 August 1984 appealing to them to join in the common effort to respond positively to the requests of African countries for assistance to cope with the problems of refugees and returnees either through their bilateral programmes or through contributions to pertinent multilateral programmes.

4.         As indicated in paragraphs 60 and 61 of the Secretary-General's report (A/39/402), within the United Nations system the Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) is the focal point for all assistance relating to emergency relief, care and maintenance as well as appropriate support for the voluntary repatriation of refugees or their settlement in countries of asylum. The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is the focal point for all technical and capital assistance designed to strengthen the infrastructure of asylum countries and, in the returnees, the countries of origin.

5.         Steps have also been taken to apprise the agencies and organizations of the United Nations system, as well as pertinent intergovernmental organizations and voluntary agencies, of the outcome of the Conference and the priority needs of the affected countries.

6.         Action has been taken by UNHCR and UNDP to make appropriate arrangements within their respective organizations to process efficiently and promptly all contributions received from donors. Details of their arrangements are as follows:


In response to the Declaration and Programme of Action and in accordance with its mandate, UNHCR will seek to provide essential relief, care and maintenance assistance to refugees in emergency situations and endeavour to achieve lasting solutions through voluntary repatriation, settlement in the country of asylum or resettlement. In pursuing these objectives, the High Commissioner will operate through his established field and headquarters network.

At the headquarters level: The High Commissioner has appointed the Head of Africa Bureau as the focal point for follow-up action to the Conference on all matters arising from paragraph 5 (b) of General Assembly resolution 37/197. Within the Africa Bureau, the daily monitoring of continuing and additional refugee needs as well as the elaboration and evaluation of projects will be carried out by individual country desk officers of the Africa Bureau working under the supervision of their section chiefs. Close co-ordination will be maintained with the Assistance Division. The External Affairs Division will seek the essential financial resources to fund the programmes and will report to donors through the Fund Raising Section while the Public Information Section will keep the needs of refugees in Africa before the eyes of the international community, as well as make available progress reports to the media.

At the field level: The representatives of the High Commissioner in the affected African countries will take responsibility for all aspects of UNHCR's programmes at the country and regional levels in response to the needs which fall under paragraph 5 (b) of the above-mentioned resolution. The main tasks of the representatives will be:

(a)  To maintain up-to-date information on refugee movements and needs;

(b)  To co-ordinate closely with host Governments to ensure the provision of adequate protection and assistance measures;

(c)  To identify suitable partners for the implementation of programmes of assistance to refugees and thereafter to channel necessary funds, to sign agreements, monitor, evaluate and report progress;

(d)  To establish and maintain close contact at the national level with relevant government ministries, UNDP and other agencies, concerned non-governmental organizations, donor embassies and other involved persons or groups in order to facilitate co-ordination between programmes initiated under the provisions of paragraph 5 (b) of General Assembly resolution 37/197)

(e)  To keep the UNHCR headquarters fully informed on activities, problems and progress.

In matters relating to the co-ordination of action taken under paragraphs 5 (b) and 5 (c) of General Assembly resolution 37/197, UNHCR's role will be focused through its representatives on the ICARA II Steering Committee.


In response to the mandate given to UNDP under paragraphs 11 and 14 of the Declaration and Plan of Action of the Conference, the following arrangements have been made within UNDP to deal with the follow-up required for mobilizing resources for and actual implementation, monitoring, evaluation and follow-up of development related projects as envisaged in paragraph 5 (c) of General Assembly resolution 37/197.

At the headquarters level: The Administrator of UNDP has established, within the Regional Bureau for Africa, a Unit to follow-up on the Conference, headed by a senior staff member on a full-time basis. The main tasks of this Unit will be as follows:

(a)  To obtain and maintain up-to-date information from donors on actual or planned offers of assistance and the specific projects for which such assistance would be used;

(b)  To obtain and maintain up-to-date information from recipients on offers to assistance made, negotiated and accepted and the progress of the implementation of the projects for which such assistance was offered and accepted;

(c)  To obtain from recipient countries information on any projects that have been cancelled from the agreed list and on those projects that have placed them;

(d)  To obtain periodic status reports from both donors and recipients on the state of bilateral negotiations for assistance;

(e)  To present the above information into a form that will respond to inquiries from both donors and recipients, on a day-to-day basis, about commitments on and the implementation of development-related projects as agreed in the Declaration and Plan of Action of the Conference;

(f)   To prepare on behalf of UNDP its input to the Secretary-General's annual progress report on the implementation of the Plan of Action of the Conference;

(g)  To assist recipient Governments in the mobilization of resources required to finance their priority projects through establishing and maintaining a close dialogue with the donor community

(h)  The work of the Unit will be closely coordinated with and will support that of the Resident Representatives in the field as described hereunder.

In cases where funds are channelled and earmarked for development-related projects through UNDP, those funds will be administered through Trust Fund arrangements instituted by the Administrator of UNDP under existing UNDP financial rules and regulations. Such rules and regulations provide for cases where donors specify the projects which their funds are meant to finance as well as where block allocations are made without specified projects.

In cases where donors tie their offers to the purchase of goods and services from their countries or other specified sources, existing UNDP rules permit the Administrator to make available, upon request by the donors and the recipients concerned, management services to facilitate the implementation of such projects. The nature, extent and cost of such services will be determined by the expressed needs of the donors and recipients through direct negotiation with UNDP.

At the field level: Instructions have already been sent to UNDP Resident Representatives as to the need for the closest possible co-operation in the field with UNHCR on refugee-related matters. Specifically on follow-up to the Conference, the Resident Representatives will use their existing co-ordination mechanisms with other donors and United Nations agencies as well as their daily contacts with recipient Governments concerned to obtain information from them as well as from non-governmental organizations on the progress of the implementation of such projects. To ensure that there is orderly management in the mobilization of resources and monitoring of projects involved, the Resident Representatives will assist the recipient Governments concerned to strengthen their own mechanisms for the co-ordination of aid and project implementation and monitoring.

The Resident Representatives will be the focal points in the field for obtaining from recipient Governments, local donor representatives, non-government organizations and executing agencies of the United Nations system pertinent information on offers of assistance and on the implementation of those projects. Such information will be fed into the headquarters unit for follow-up action or processing as indicated above. The Resident Representatives will also be a source of information to the Governments to which they are accredited on donor interest in the projects as well as follow-up to the Conference as a whole.

The Resident Representatives will ensure, through advice and assistance to the Governments, the best possible selection and elaboration of projects, identification of sources of financing, preparation for negotiations of offers of assistance, and implementation and monitoring of such projects, where specifically requested.


A.        Background

7.         In paragraphs 65 and 66 of the report of the Secretary-General (A/39/402), reference was made to the request by five additional Governments for assistance under the Conference to cope with refugee/returnee situations in their countries, namely Benin, Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Chad and Djibouti. A sixth country, Guinea, made a similar request in September 1984.

8.         For the purpose of ensuring a uniform approach in the presentation of such requests, the Secretary-General decided to send a United Nations technical team to each country to help the authorities in formulating their needs for assistance. The team consisted of representatives of UNDP, UNHCR, the Organization of African Unity (OAU) and the Office for Special Political Questions of the Secretariat.

9.         The team visited Chad, the Central African Republic, Cameroon, Guinea and Djibouti during the period from 24 September to 25 October 1984. The team did not visit Benin as the Government requested the postponement of the visit to a later date.

10.       In each country the technical team consulted with the authorities as well as with the local representatives of donor countries, the United Nations agencies and voluntary organizations. These consultations included discussions on economic conditions in each country, the nature and magnitude of the refugee or returnee situation, and the policy which each Government was following in dealing with refugees or returnees. The team also reviewed the impact that the situation was having on the economy. Project outlines were formulated in regard to specific measures which the Governments considered essential to cope with the refugee/returnee burden.

11.       The five countries visited range in population size from an estimated 382,000 in Djibouti (1982 data) to an estimated 9.1 million in Cameroon (1983 data). The total estimated population of all the countries is 22.12 million with an average annual growth rate of 2.5 per cent. There is also a considerable range of per capita gross national product (GNP), from a low $110 in Chad (1981 data) to an estimated $880 in Cameroon in 1983. Apart from Cameroon all the countries are classified as least developed among developing countries.

12.       With the exception of Cameroon which has known steady economic growth, all the countries have, in recent years, experienced varying degrees of economic difficulties.

13.       One of the major factors affecting economic growth has been a decline in agricultural production, including food production which is largely at subsistence level.

14.       Four of the countries have also been hit by prolonged drought which has seriously affected many sectors of their economic activity and have stultified their plans for socio-economic growth.

15.       Other major constraints have been an increase of external debt, budget deficits and the worsening of the balance-of-payments situation, the latter being almost chronic in at least three of the countries.

B.        Summary by country

1.         Cameroon

16.       Over the last 10 years Cameroon has granted asylum to refugees of various origins, the largest group being Chadians, over 100,000 of whom sought refuge in Cameroon during 1980 and 1981. The majority of Chadians were able to return home voluntarily during 1982 and 1983. Those who remained were offered the possibility of rural settlement at a site at Poli (Faro) near Garoua. In recent weeks some hundreds of refugees have again crossed the border from Chad and have been accommodated at Poli (Faro).

17.       These new arrivals bring to some 4,200 the number of refugees known to UNHCR. In addition to the Chadians, there are groups of various origins, the most notable being 110 Namibian refugee students who have come to Cameroon for five years secondary level studies and who upon completion of study will return to their countries of first asylum.

18.       The Government accords refugee status to groups fleeing from war situations; individual cases are passed through the UNHCR office to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for consideration. Recognized refugees have freedom of access to social services such as education and health; some will have the opportunity of economic integration through the rural settlement at Poli (Faro).

2.         Central African Republic

19.       Over the last 20 years the Central African Republic has granted asylum to large numbers of refugees fleeing from war situations in their own countries as well as to various individual asylum-seekers.

20.       The latest influx came during September and October 1984 when over 10,000 persons seeking refuge from disturbances in southern Chad entered the Central African Republic. They are at present located along the northern frontier where they receive emergency assistance and await transfer to a safer place away from the border.

21.       In addition to this new influx there is a population of some 4,500 refugees in the Central African Republic in need of durable solutions. The majority are of rural Chadian origin, gathered principally in the area of Bangui, Batamgafo and Paoua.

22.       The Government's plans are two-fold: to make a census of the refugee population and to decide on a site for a rural settlement which would enable the new arrivals and those who are interested amongst the old case-load to seek integration through agricultural and pastoral activities. Efforts will also be made to identify solutions for urban refugees.

3.         Chad

23.       With the cessation of hostilities in Chad in 1981, an agreement was made enabling UNHCR to co-ordinate the voluntary repatriation of former refugees with asylum in neighbouring countries. The movement homewards took place during 1981 and 1982, both spontaneously and with assistance from the international community. Over 200,000 persons benefited from the distribution by UNHCR and CARE of food and other basic assistance items during 1981, 1982 and 1983.

24.       In addition, the Government states that a further 100,000 have returned spontaneously during the last 12 months making a total of over 300,000 returnees spread over a large part of the country.

25.       Unfortunately, the arrival of the refugees coincided with a resumption of the civil war and the return of severe drought and famine conditions. These factors have combined to frustrate all efforts aimed at the settlement and reintegration of returnees into the life of the community.

4.         Djibouti

26.       At the height of the refugee influx into Djibouti, the Government estimated that their numbers reached 42,000 most of whom were given asylum in the camps at Ali-Sabieh and Dikhil, with the remainder living in the urban areas, especially the slum suburb of Balbala.

27.       Following a tripartite agreement between the Governments of Djibouti and Ethiopia as well as UNHCR, covering the period to the end of 1984, a voluntary repatriation programme began in September 1983 and, by the end of October 1984, 14,200 people had left the camps in organized movements, while an undetermined number had returned spontaneously.

28.       A further tripartite meeting of the two Governments and UNHCR is planned for November 1984 to evaluate the situation. It is possible, however, that the continuation of the voluntary repatriation programme may be hampered by severe drought in Ethiopia.

29.       Local integration of large numbers of refugees is difficult in a country of Djibouti's limited resources. Since the refugees are primarily pastoral/agricultural and considering the needs of Djibouti, the principal outlet for achieving a measure of self-sufficiency lies in small-scale agriculture. Care and maintenance programmes will continue at the same time as efforts to reach some degree of self-reliance through market-gardening and handicrafts.

5.         Guinea

30.       When the régime changed in Guinea in April 1984, there were, according to government estimates, up to 2 million Guineans in exile, the majority in neighbouring countries. Shortly after taking power, the Government declared an amnesty for all Guineans living abroad and encouraged them to return home.

31.       The Government of Guinea estimates that, by October 1984, 300,000 former refugees had returned with the prospect of many more returning home in the near future. If this ideal solution to the refugee problem is to succeed, it is essential that the returnee is given a fair and reasonable opportunity to establish a new life. Unfortunately, the economy of Guinea is in an extremely precarious state. Basic services need to be revitalized and expanded, and the economic and social infrastructure rehabilitated and strengthened. The low standard of services means that the limited assistance available from UNHCR in accordance with its mandate must be supplemented by development assistance to the basic sectors.

C.        Impact of the presence of refugees/returnees

32.       In least developed countries the presence of refugees represents an enormous strain on a social and economic infrastructure already inadequate for national needs. When the refugees are concentrated, as they are in the countries under review, in remote rural districts or the poor slum areas of cities where services and opportunities are at their weakest, this burden can become unbearable. The most obvious areas of pressure are in the health, education and employment sectors. It is also to be noted that the scant services made available to refugees within camp or settlement areas can render them privileged people in comparison with a particularly deprived local population; a case in point can be seen in Djibouti where the refugee camps compared favourably with the miserable conditions of the internally displaced persons living nearby. The infrastructure in refugee populated areas must be able to benefit both refugees and local nationals alike, otherwise the disparity will create tensions and adversely affect the situation as a whole.

D. Needs for assistance

33.       Thirty-five projects for an aggregate value of approximately $67 million are submitted for consideration for funding under the terms of paragraph 5 (c) of General Assembly resolution 37/197: 3 for Cameroon for a value of some $4 million; 1 preparatory project for the Central African Republic for $250,000; 12 for Chad for $18 million; 5 for Djibouti for $8 million and 14 for Guinea for nearly $36 million.

34.       The following is a breakdown of the projects by sector:








(In thousand United States dollars)




3 400



4 200

Central African Republic








5 860


1 924

1 600

8 650

18 034


2 300


1 300

1 000

3 400

8 000


10 156

11 355

9 000

5 480


35 991


18 566

11 355

15 624

8 880

12 050

66 475

35.       The following list contains the title, cost and duration of each project by country, as well as total external financing required.

1.   Cameroon: 3 projects

(Total external financing $4.2 million)

(a)  Education

Construction and equipment of two secondary schools ($6 million, with external financing of $2.4 million and government financing of $3.6 million, two years);

Construction and equipment of a wing to the university hostel ($1.0 million).

(b)  Health

Improvement of Poli hospital ($800,000 as tentative estimates, three years).

2.   Central African Republic: 1 preparatory project

(Initial external financing of $250,000; projected external financing of between $5.5 million and $6.0 million)

Feasibility study, at a cost of $250,000, for the establishment of an integrated rural development programme, (preliminary cost estimates of between $5.5 million and $6.0 million).

3.   Chad: 12 Projects

(Total external financing: $18,158,000)

(a)  Agriculture

Hydro-agricultural development, Chari-Baguirmi ($340,000, two years);

Re-activation of 'Ouaddis" farming, Kanem and Mao ($780,000, 18 months to two years);

Diversification of agriculture, Ouaddai ($240,000, 18 months to two years);

Strengthening of agricultural extension services provided by National Office for Rural Development ($1.7 million, three years);

Establishment of an irrigation scheme, Chari ($840,000, two years);

Reinforcement of animal health control services ($800,000, three years);

Programme of assistance to farmers affected by rinderpest ($1,160,000, three years).

(b)  Education

Construction and equipment of primary schools ($1,042,000, two years);

Skills development programme for school leavers and drop-outs through agricultural training and trade centres ($882,000).

(c)  Health

Sanitation programme in drought-stricken areas ($1.6 million, four years);

Rehabilitation of national health care delivery system (tentative estimates of $2.1 million, three years).

(d)  Water

Improvement of water supply infrastructure ((i) rehabilitation of wells in Ouaddai, Batha, Kanem and Chari-Baguirmi, $350,000, two years; (ii) rehabilitation of tubewells in Lac, Chari-Baguirmi, Moyen-Chari and Kanem, $1.1 million, three years; (iii) establishment of water supply facilities in Ouaddai "geographique" and Salamat, $2.0 million, two years; (iv) boreholes and water-pumping stations in Logone Occidental and Logone-Oriental, $2.7 million, two years; (v) boreholes and water-pumping stations in Mayo-Kebbi-Tandjile, $2.5 million, two years).

4.   Djibouti: 5 projects

(Total external financing: $8.0 million)

(a)  Agriculture

Irrigation programme in Petit Bara and Ali-Sabieh ($2.3 million, three years).

(b)  Education

Expansion of Ali-Sabieh Vocational Training Centre to include an Agricultural Education and Training Section ($1.3 million, three years).

(c)  Health

Improvement of tuberculosis treatment system, Dikhil (preliminary estimates of $500,000, three years);

Establishment of a maternity clinic at Balbala (preliminary estimates of $500,000, three years).

(d)  Water

Water supply system in Balbala ($3.4 million, three years).

5.   Guinea: 14 projects

(Total external financing: $35,991,000)

(a)  Agriculture

Promotion of the use of fertilizers and related agricultural inputs and improvement of extension services ($1,564,000, three years);

Programme for increasing the cassava production ($180,000, two years))

Hydro-agricultural development in the low-lands of Pakiessi and Yama ($1,423,000, three years);

Hydro-agricultural development, Sansina ($598,000, three years);

Improvement of rice production, Koba ($1,083,000, three years);

Improvement of animal husbandry techniques, Fouta-Djallon ($4,408,000, three years);

Assistance in the establishment of a maize feed production unit and a poultry farm ($900,000, two years).

(b)  Education

Assistance to the Printing Department, Ministry Of National Education ($1,650,000, three years);

Construction and equipment of classrooms in Labé and Kankan ($5,290,000, four years);

Construction and equipment of a health-training school (secondary level) ($60,000, two years);

Transfer of knowledge through expatriate nationals programme (TOKTEN) ($2,000,000, three years).

(c)  Health

Improvement of basic health services in Labé ($5,000,000, three years).

(d)  Roads

Rehabilitation of access roads: (i) access roads to plantations, Dubreka province, $1,557,000, three years; (ii) access roads to plantations, Kindia province, $1,671,000, three years; (iii) access roads to agricultural areas, Boké province, $1,557,000, three years; (iv) access roads to plantations, farms and areas with agricultural potential, Labé province, $1,671,000, three years; (v) access roads to agricultural areas, Paranah province, $1,671,000, three years; (vi) access roads to plantations, cotton fields and areas with agricultural potential, Kankan province, $1,671,000, three years; (vii) access roads to plantations, N' Zérékoré province, $1,557,000, three years).

(e)  Social welfare

Construction and equipment of eight social welfare centres for women ($480,000, two years).


36.       In compliance with the request concerning follow-up action, the Secretary-General, by a letter dated 17 August 1984, invited the Ministers for Foreign Affairs of those States that had participated in the Conference to provide information on action which their Governments had taken or proposed to take in response to the refugee needs described in the various projects and programmes presented to the Conference.

37.       In addition to the Secretary-General's letter to Governments, on 6 September 1984 the Under-Secretary-General for Special Political Questions addressed a letter to all organizations of the United Nations system and to concerned voluntary agencies, inviting them to provide information on action taken or proposed in response to the Conference. As soon as replies have been received, they will be issued in an addendum to the present document.

38.       The replies of Governments received as at 31 October 1984 indicating a pledge or contribution are reproduced below. In addition to these replies the Secretary-General also received communications from the Bahamas, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Mexico, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Venezuela and Zimbabwe expressing regret of not being able to make any contributions at this stage. Any additional replies received from Governments will be issued in an addendum to the present document.


Original: English

[4 October 1984]

1.         In his statement on 10 July 1984 at Geneva, the Austrian Secretary-General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Gerald Hinteregger, indicated Austria's intention to support two projects of the Second International Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa:

(a)  Improvement of health infrastructure in refugee and returnee areas in Ethiopia (5-C project);

(b)  Voluntary repatriation of Ethiopian refugees from Djibouti (T-b project).

2.         Concerning Austria's intention to participate in the above-mentioned project 5-C in Ethiopia, I would like to inform you that my Government is already in contact with UNDP and the Ethiopian Relief and Rehabilitation Commission (RRC) regarding the general organization of health care in Ethiopia at present and Austria's plan to execute this project. Austria intends to send a mission consisting of one or two experts to Ethiopia at the end of 1984 or early 1985. Following this mission as well as negotiations with the Ethiopian authorities, we will offer to execute a feasibility study concerning the construction of the planned hospital in Dire Dawa and the health centres in refugee areas.

3.         Austria's financial share in this project can only be determined after the completion of this feasibility study. In accordance with the statement of the Austrian representative at Geneva, Austria is prepared to co-operate with other donor countries in group financing this project.

4.         With regard to UNHCR project "Voluntary repatriation of Ethiopian refugees from Djibouti", I would like to inform you about the readiness of my Government to continue supporting this project. The same amount as in 1983, that is ASh 2.5 million, has been allocated for the Shinille region. The project proposal has already been received by my Government and is at present under consideration.

5.         I am fully aware that the problem of African refugees constitutes an integral part of the critical economic and social situation in many African countries. Let me assure you of Austria's continued support in this field.


[3 October 1984]

1.         At the Second International Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa, held in July 1984, Belgium indicated that it was prepared:

(a)  To provide to UNHCR in 1984 food aid consisting of 7,000 tons of wheat equivalent;

(b)  To place qualified staff at the disposal of UNHCR to assist it in its work;

(c)  To identify a project in one of the countries where the Survival Fund is currently concentrating its activities;

(d)  To identify another project in one of the African countries, as part of its bilateral co-operation, once it received more information on the project proposals submitted to the Conference.

2.         As of now (end of September 1984), the situation is as follows:

(a)  With regard to the food aid: The food aid was pledged to UNHCR in a letter dated 17 May 1984, accompanied by a questionnaire which would make it possible to determine how the aid should be provided;

(b)  With regard to the provision of staff: By letters dated 30 July 1984, the High Commission for Refugees and the Executive Co-ordinator of the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) were invited to submit job descriptions for one associate expert and three United Nations volunteers;

(c)  With regard to the project to be financed by the Survival Fund: An identification mission co-ordinated by IFAD has been conducted for phase 1 of the Mahaday Wayne integrated rural development project in Somalia. The Belgian authorities are awaiting the final version of the project document and hope to be able to approve it before the end of 1984);

(d)  With regard to the project to be funded under bilateral co-operation: Interest had been expressed in the project "Land development and agricultural extension, Nyanza-Lac" in Burundi. A later analysis had shown, however, that this project's chances of success were not guaranteed 100 per cent. It was therefore decided to include other proposals in the preparatory study which should enable final decision to be taken regarding this aspect of the commitments made by Belgium at the Conference.


[23 October 1984]

The Permanent Mission of Chile to the United Nations presents its compliments to the Secretariat of the United Nations and has the honour to transmit to it the attached cheque, drawn on The Chase Manhattan Bank N. A., for the sum of $US 10,000 (ten thousand United States dollars) corresponding to the Chilean Government's contribution to the Second International Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa.


The People's Republic of China has contributed $US 1 million to the Second International Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa. A cheque for this amount was presented to UNHCR during the Conference and, in accordance with the wishes of the Government of China, will be used to finance programmes falling under paragraphs 5 (b) and 5 (c) of General Assembly resolution 37/197.


[5 October 1984]

1.         In reply to your request for information on action taken in response to refugee needs, I take pleasure, on behalf of my Minister, in informing you that at the Conference Denmark pledged - subject to parliamentary approval - a contribution of 12 million kroner (approximately $US 1.1 million) in 1984 in response to the appeal launched by UNHCR for support to its programmes in Africa. Steps have already been taken to fulfil this pledge, and it is expected that the funds may be transferred shortly. The Danish Government is determined to support the valuable activities of UNHCR for the benefit of refugees in Africa as long as the need for assistance exists.

2.         At the Conference Denmark furthermore indicated its willingness to support one or more of the projects outlined in document A/CONF.125/2 or similar projects with approximately 30 million kroner over the next three to five years. Denmark has stressed that the projects should be fully integrated into the development plans of the recipient country concerned and clearly related to the needs of the refugees as well. Preference will be given to countries with which Denmark has already established extensive development co-operation. Following contacts during the Conference with the delegation of the United Republic of Tanzania the question of possible Danish support to one or more projects presented by the United Republic of Tanzania in connection with the Conference has been raised bilaterally in Dar es Salaam.

3.         I wish to take this opportunity, on behalf of my Minister, to express to you my appreciation of your engagement in the plight of the African refugees and your active participation in the Conference.


[Original: English)

[9 October 1984]

1.         At the first international Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa, held in 1981, Finland pledged 12 million FIM (approximately $US 3 million) for an agricultural development project in the Sudan refugee settlement area in the eastern Sudan. The major part of the funds has been used for the delivery of tractors and agricultural implements with spare parts and a complete mechanical workshop. The project also comprises technical assistance and a training programme. The implementation of the project started in February 1983 in Showak. An additional Finnish contribution of approximately 3 million FIM was made in May 1984 to continue the operations of the project through 1984-1985.

2.         The Government of the Sudan requested, in December 1983, additional Finnish assistance for the continuation and expansion of the project. At the second Conference held in early July 1984 at Geneva, Finland pledged approximately 13 million FIM for the extension of the project within the framework of that Conference during the years 1985-1987.

3.         During the consultations on development co-operation between the Governments of the Sudan and Finland, held in April 1984 at Khartoum, it was agreed that the second phase of the project will be formulated during an evaluation of the ongoing project. At the same time, possibilities should be studied to include in the scope of the project more agricultural training and extension services.

The joint mission composition is planned to be the following;

(a)  Two representatives of the Sudanese Refugee Authorities;

(b)  one Finnish Agriculturalist with specialization in tropical agriculture, including training;

(c)  One Finnish Specialist in Mechanized Agriculture;

(d)  A representative of FINNIDA (Finnish Development Agency).

5.         The work in the Sudan will take place in November and the mission report is expected to be finalized during December 1984.

Ethiopia and Somalia

6.         In addition to the ongoing project in the Sudan, Finland's pledge included support to two additional projects in African least developed Countries. In Ethiopia, Finland will contribute to the construction of a central storage facility or agricultural input and output in Dire Dawa worth about 5 million Finnish marks. In Somalia, Finland will implement the project regarding construction of 25 grain storage warehouses in various locations, the estimated costs being 37 million Finnish marks.

7.         The implementation of the projects is planned to start early 1985. A preliminary tender invitation was announced with 1 October as closing date. Final tender invitation will be announced within one month.


[5 October 1984]

1.         By the list of priorities it adopted, the Second International Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa has made evident the need to do everything possible to avert new flows of refugees. The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany emphatically endorses this objective, having initiated the discussion of this subject during the thirty-fifth session of the General Assembly and having been a member since its inception of the Group of Governmental Experts on International Co-operation to Avert New Flows of Refugees. The Federal Republic of Germany will continue its unflagging commitment to the mandate of this Group whose work should culminate, in the view of the Federal Government, in:

(a)  Elaboration of a declaration incorporating all principles and obligations under international law relevant to the problem of refugees;

(b)  Assignment to an existing body within the United Nations system the task of dealing preventively with refugee situations (preflow situations), or establishment of a new body for this purpose.

2.         In addition, the Federal Government has taken up the following UNHCR programmes and the projects of the countries of asylum, which were presented to the Conference:

(a)  Through its Humanitarian Refugee Aid, the Federal Government contributes to meeting the basic needs of refugees in the countries of asylum and, wherever possible, to their voluntary repatriation. Toward these ends, the Federal Government has to date made available a total of 10 million Deutsche Mark in 1984 for UNHCR programmes in nine countries, including five programmes of which the participants of the Conference were apprised. Further relief measures for UNHCR programmes in Africa to the tune of 1.25 million Deutsche Mark have been scheduled for the current year. In addition, relief programmes of the International Committee of the Red Cross (4 million Deutsche Mark in 1984) and of private relief organizations for refugees in Africa are supported by the Federal Government. Since it must operate within annual budgets, the Federal Government is at present unable to make any pledges for humanitarian aid-beyond fiscal year 1984. However, a similarly high level of engagement in mitigating the emergency needs of refugees may be assumed;

(b)  In the framework of its development co-operation, the Federal Government has for years been supporting long-range, structure-promoting measures relevant to refugees. In doing so, it pays close attention to the special burdens placed by the refugee presence on the economic and social infrastructure of the countries of asylum, and takes these burdens into account when allocating its funds.

After the conclusion of the Conference, the Federal Government approached all countries of asylum and pointed out the possibility of shifting to the system of bilateral development co-operation, through the usual channels of consultation, projects to which they attach particular priority. This has already generated a response.

All the bilateral projects which the Federal Government, during the Conference, undertook to review have by now been studied. Some projects that have been found to be eligible are now subject to the usual procedure of formal agreement undertaken jointly with the recipient Governments. For budgetary reasons, however, a final decision on these long-term projects may not be expected until 1989 and later.


[29 October 1984]

1.         The Permanent Representative of the Republic of Indonesia to the United Nations has the honour to refer to the note by the Secretary-General of 15 October 1984 concerning the utilization of the contribution to the Second international Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa.

2.         The Permanent Representative of Indonesia wishes to refer to the letter of 18 August 1984 of the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Indonesia to the United Nations in Geneva addressed to the Deputy High Commissioner for Refugees in Geneva expressing the preference of the Government of Indonesia that the amount pledged ($US 20,000) should be used to strengthen the capacity of host countries to cope with the additional burden on their public services and facilities, and to facilitate integration of refugees into the life of the community.


[10 October 1984]

1.         I have the pleasure to inform you of the initiatives taken by the Italian Government following its pledge of $US 15 million to the Second international Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa.

2.         As far as the Sudan, Zambia and Angola are concerned, ways and means of implementing the initiatives on health, training and other sectors are studied together with the competent authorities of the above-mentioned countries; hopefully, Italian technical missions will be sent there within the current year in order to evaluate specific projects to be realized with Italian assistance.

3.         As for Ethiopia, the first target will be the construction of food storages in Dire Dawa; only afterwards might it be possible to intervene in order to restore medical centres in the Goudan region.

4.         Regarding Somalia, it is at present under study the possibility of building a hospital in the Belet Uen region, as well as the project of strengthening the harbour facilities of Mogadishu.

5.         I am pleased to inform you that technical missions will be sent to Addis Ababa and Mogadishu during the current month of October in order to finalize the projects to be implemented.


[5 October 1984]

1.         Japan fully shares the grave concern and deep sympathy of the international community for the peoples of Africa who have been suffering from the effects of severe drought and famine for the past 10 years. As a measure of this concern, Japan's Foreign Minister, Mr. Shintaro Abe, announced at the OECD Ministerial Conference in May that this year Japan would extend food-related assistance to Africa amounting to more than $100 million.

2.         Major steps taken by the Japanese Government in the months since your appeal include the following:

(a)  The Government of Japan decided, on 16 March, to provide emergency food assistance amounting to $2 million to Ethiopia, Somalia, Ghana, Senegal and Mozambique;

(b)  On 9 March, the Government of Japan decided to channel through the World Food Programme approximately $7.3 million in food aid to refugees in Somalia, the Sudan and Chad;

(c)  At the Conference in Geneva this past June, Mr. Ishimatsu Kitagawa, Parliamentary vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan, made a pledge of $6 million for African refugee assistance to UNHCR, earmarked as follows: (i) approximately $1.5 million for General Programmes, (ii) $1.2 million for Somalia, (iii) $1 million for Sudan, (iv) $0.7 million for Zaire, (v) $0.3 million each or Uganda and Ethiopia, and (vi) $0.5 million each for Burundi and Zimbabwe. He also made a pledge of $6.5 million for WFP-channelled food assistance to refugees in Somalia, the Sudan and Chad. Moreover, in the area of refugee-related development projects, he indicated that Japan attached particular importance to projects in such fields as water supply and health and sanitation, which would directly benefit refugees as well as the local population;

(d)  At the 17th meeting of the Committee on Food Aid Policies and Programmes of WFP, the Japanese delegation stated that it would consider earmarking Japan's 1984 contribution of $2 million to the International Emergency Food Reserve for countries in Africa;

(e)  On 10 August, the Government decided to offer, for distribution through UNICEF and WFP, 400,000 meals of hard biscuits, stocked by municipal governments as emergency rations, to the victims of drought in Senegal, Mali and Ethiopia. The Japanese Government will also contribute $100,000 for transportation and other related expenses;

(f)   In addition, the Government of Japan has been dramatically increasing food aid and food production assistance to African countries on a bilateral basis.

3.         In order to promote a deeper understanding of Africa and its problems among the Japanese people, relevant non-governmental organizations have designated the one-month period starting from 28 September as the "Month of Africa". During the month, a number of Africa-related events, such as a film festival, an exhibition concerning the preservation of Africa's natural environment, and seminars on Africa, will be held throughout Japan.

4.         Campaigns to raise funds to aid the victims of severe droughts in Africa are also being undertaken, and will reach a climax during the "Month of Africa". For example, a group of volunteers within the Japanese Foreign Ministry are holding "hunger lunches" twice monthly. (Very simple meals are provided, and participants contribute to an African relief fund the amount they would normally spend for lunch.) This effort has caught the attention of the public, and similar gatherings are now being organized in towns and cities all over Japan. Other fund-raising activities are also under way, eliciting a response among the Japanese public that is almost without precedent.


[12 October 1984]

I am pleased to inform you that the Government of the Principality of Liechtenstein has decided to make a special contribution of 20,000 Swiss francs to the above-mentioned Programme of Action. The corresponding cheque will be sent directly to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees at Geneva.


[29 October 1984]

The Permanent Representative of Malaysia wishes to inform the Secretary-General that, pursuant to the Malaysian Government's pledge at the Second International Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa, Malaysia's Permanent Representative in Geneva had presented a cheque for $10,000.000 to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Geneva. Malaysia's contribution is to be utilized at the discretion of UNHCR in its projects for African refugees.


[25 October 1984]

1.         At the Second International Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa the Netherlands pledged an amount of $US 2 million for the 1984 UNHCR programmes in Africa, on the basis of concrete submissions by the High Commissioner ("5-B projects"). To date $US 1,271,571 has been allocated under this pledge for the following projects:


income-generating activities for handicapped refugees in Gezira

$ 18 000


health-care programmes in Eastern Sudan

$ 441 571


relief and assistance programme for Angolese refugees in Shaba

$ 300 000


assistance programme for refugees in Kibondo camp

$ 200 000

United Republic of Tanzania

assistance programme for refugees in Kigwa

$ 162 000


assistance programme for Ugandan repatriates

$ 150 000

2.         The Netherlands also stated that it intended to contribute financially to the realization of those so-called "5C-projects" which meet our criteria and for which satisfactory execution proves to be ensured.

3.         It has already been decided that one such project will be financed for an amount of $US 516,000: improvement of health infrastructure in Aru, Zaire. The Project will be executed by the non-governmental organization "Association Internationale de Developpement Rurale". Consultations on the formulation, financing and implementation of several other "5C-projects", promoting both the integration of refugees and the benefit of the local population, are well under way now.


[12 October 1984]

1.         I have been asked to inform you on the Minister's behalf, that the New Zealand Government pledged at the Conference $US 150,000 to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, in addition to our regular contribution, specifically for refugee assistance in Africa.

2.         You drew attention in your letter to the special roles of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and the United Nations Development Programme in the implementation of the results of the Conference. New Zealand supports both bodies. This year, our contribution to UNDP has been increased by one third to $US 2 million. We also make regular contributions to other agencies that are active in Africa, including the United Nations Children's Fund and the World Food Programme. Earlier this year, in response to your initiative to draw the attention of the international community to the critical economic situation of African countries, the New Zealand Government made a grant of $US 100,000 to the World Food programme in addition to our normal contribution.


[26 October 1984]

In addition to Norwegian contributions to UNHCR and other organizations working for the assistance to refugees in Africa, Norway pledged a special contribution of 15 million for the projects presented under paragraph 5 (b) of resolution 37/197 of 18 December 1982, and indicated an interest in financing special developing projects for approximately $US 2 million under paragraph 5 (c) of the same resolution. Norway has identified the following five projects under paragraph 5 (c) of the resolution: a reafforestation project in Botswana, vocational schools for refugees in the United Republic of Tanzania, Kenya and the Sudan, and a school for refugees in western Zambia. Negotiations on the implementation of these projects will be taken up with the respective governments shortly.


[11 October 1984]

In response to refugee needs described in the various projects and programmes presented to the Second International Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa, the Portuguese Government will participate in the project for a Centre for vocational Training in Uige, Angola.


[14 September 1984]

On 14 September 1984, the Government of Saudi Arabia deposited an amount of $5 million into the "UNDP Contributions Account", Chemical Bank, New York, representing a contribution to the UNDP Trust Fund of the Second international Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa. This amount is currently being held in our suspense account pending receipt of the signed Trust Fund Agreement.[6]


[23 October 1984]

1.         At the Second International Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa, Sweden pledged 42 million Sw. Crs., of which 17 million Sw. Crs. were directed as an extra contribution to UNHCR programmes in Africa. The remaining 25 million Sw. Crs. has been allocated, as an additional contribution, to Conference-related projects in some of the refugee-affected countries in Africa.

2.         These projects, some of which have already been initiated, have been identified in close co-operation with the Governments of the countries concerned, and aim primarily at improving water supply and agricultural production. We will thereby seek to strengthen the infrastructure of host countries and thus enable them to cope with the additional burdens imposed on their economies by the refugee presence. In the preparation of these projects, due consideration has been given the fact that the overall situation in many countries has been aggravated by drought.

3.         In order to initiate a dialogue with the concerned recipient countries about further action in this direction, my Government will draw attention to the question about refugee aid and development in bilateral discussions and negotiations regarding development co-operation.

4.         We are also prepared to consider support for development-oriented refugee projects to be implemented through United Nations bodies and non-governmental organizations. This can be the case primarily in countries with which Sweden does not have a bilateral development co-operation programme.


[30 October 1984]

1.         At the conference, my Government expressed its deep concern at the critical situation of refugees in Africa. Switzerland also confirmed its interest in actions which combine humanitarian assistance and development assistance.

2.         It was in this spirit that my Government announced that it planned to Contribute approximately 1 million Swiss francs to a special programme of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) for the benefit of Angolan refugees in Zaire. Switzerland also indicated that it was prepared to participate in the funding of two projects in the Gambella region of Ethiopia and two projects, at Port Sudan and Suakin, in the Sudan.

3.         Since then, practical steps have been taken to put into effect the pledges made by my Government at the Conference. With regard to the special UNHCR programme for Angolan refugees in Zaire, a procedure which should lead to an exchange of letters between Switzerland and the High Commissioner's Office, is currently under way. As soon as it is concluded, Switzerland will pay UNHCR a first instalment of SwF 500,000 for 1985.

4.         With regard to the four projects in Ethiopia and the Sudan, Switzerland has tried to obtain additional information from the two States so that it can take a final decision on its participation in the funding. My Government intends to pursue its contacts with Ethiopia in this connection.

5.         Progress has been made concerning the two projects in the Sudan: Switzerland has been able to take a decision on the initial documentation and has submitted to the Sudanese authorities comments and questions on the participation of other donor countries in the plan of operations and the implementation of these projects. My Government, moreover, welcomes the initiative taken by the Resident Co-ordinator of the United Nations system in the Sudan in organizing a preliminary exchange of views among the principal donors and earnestly hopes that his efforts can be pursued.


[4 October 1984]

As in previous years, the United Kingdom will respond to the emergency and developmental needs of the African refugees. This response will be to the special appeals from the multilateral, international and British voluntary agencies and will be as generous as possible within the limits of the aid programme. The United Kingdom has already announced at the Second International Conference Assistance to Refugees in Africa new monies for refugee-related infrastructure projects during the Conference Period 1984-1989. This sum of £5 million will be used to fund either projects from the Conference portfolio or similar projects in African countries experiencing influxes of refugees. The funds will be given primarily to the international and British voluntary agencies and such requests are now beginning to be processed.


[16 October 1984]

1.         The United States will continue to respond generously to the needs of Africa's refugees. Over the past four years, United States contributions to UNHCR have averaged about one third of that organization's budget. In our 1984 fiscal year, the United States contributed to UNHCR approximately $46,500,000 for African refugee assistance. This included approximately $43,000,000 for UNHCR's general programme for African refugee emergency relief, care and maintenance, voluntary repatriation and resettlement in countries of asylum. It also included, inter alia, additional contributions in response to UNHCR special appeals for Mozambicans in Zimbabwe ($1,200,000) and Ugandan returnees to West Nile Province ($1,700,000).

2.         The Government of the United States wholeheartedly supports the Declaration and Programme of Action of the Second International Conference on Assistance to Refugees in Africa and its goal of achieving durable solutions for Africa's refugee problems. In particular, we endorse the importance of integrating refugee assistance efforts with national development planning, in order both to increase refugee self-reliance and to assist host countries to cope with their burdens. We have already done much in this direction.

3.         Shortly before the Conference, our Agency for International Development (USAID) funded a $4,470,000 refugee-related project in Rwanda to improve pastures and develop cattle-raising at Nasho Ranch.

4.         Since the Conference, the United States, through both USAID and the Bureau for Refugee Programs of the State Department, has funded the following refugee-related development projects:

(a)  A $500,000 project involving returnees and indigenous Chadians, for private enterprise development in Chad;

(b)  A $2.5 million ($3 million authorized) refugee-related project for reforestation in Rwanda;

(c)  A $650,000 project for design of the refugee settlement programme in Somalia;

(d)  A $5.5 million project to improve water availability for refugees and Sudanese in Gedaref, Sudan;

(e)  A $3.5 million project for roads in Shaba province of Zaire;

(f)   A $780,000 project for agriculture development in Northwest Province of Zambia.

5.         In addition, a further $776,000 was recently made available to UNHCR to conduct feasibility and design studies for development projects to be selected from those proposed by African countries at the Conference. USAID is also preparing a 3.8 million agricultural rehabilitation project for returnees to the West Nile District of Uganda, $7.5 million in water and health-related projects in Shaba Province of Zaire and the above-mentioned settlement programme in Somalia - for which up to $7 million may be obligated in the next six months.

6.         I have read with interest your description of arrangements which UNHCR and UNDP have instituted to implement the Declaration and Programme of Action. The roles which have been designated for UNHCR and UNDP, and the inclusion of voluntary agencies and other international organizations in the process appear to accommodate tell the new requirements to integrate refugee-related development needs with host-country development planning. It is important that this "complementarity between refugee and development assistance" which you note in your letter be fully recognized in development forums and made a part of the long-term development Philosophy of African and donor Governments. Please be assured that the Government of the United States will co-operate fully with both UNHCR and UNDP in their cooperative endeavours to meet the needs and serve the goals so clearly enunciated at the Conference.

7.         In closing, I would like to reiterate the concluding lines of the addresses given by the United States heads of delegation, respectively, at the Second Conference and the First Conference; the first, "the plight of African refugees in need will not go unheeded", and the second, "you can count on the United States".


[31 October 1984]

As the Yugoslav delegation already stated at the Conference, the Government of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia has decided to render to the refugees in Africa assistance in goods and equipment of Yugoslav origin in the amount of 45 million dinars.

[1] For a feasibility study for rural development programme encompassing agriculture, roads, education, health, water and electricity at a cost estimated at $5.5 million to $6.0 million.

[2] For a feasibility study for rural development programme encompassing agriculture, roads, education, health, water and electricity at a cost estimated at $5.5 mission to $6.0 million.

[3] For a feasibility study for rural development programme encompassing agriculture, roads, education, health, water and electricity at a cost estimated at $5.5 mission to $6.0 million.

[4] For a feasibility study for rural development programme encompassing agriculture, roads, education, health, water and electricity at a cost estimated at $5.5 mission to $6.0 million.

[5] For a feasibility study for rural development programme encompassing agriculture, roads, education, health, water and electricity at a cost estimated at $5.5 mission to $6.0 million.

[6] By a separate communication, the Government indicated that the amount should be used for projects falling under paragraph 5 (c) of General Assembly resolution 37/197.


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