UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, has appointed Ambassador Mohamed Abdi Affey as its Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa. The appointment reflects recent developments, including the rapprochement between Eritrea and Ethiopia, as well as other States in the region, which have the potential for progress towards finding solutions for the over 1.5 million refugees in the Horn of Africa.
As Special Envoy, Ambassador Affey’s role will include advocating for continued international protection and increased inclusion of refugees in the countries they reside in, as well as for more global investment in the region. He will engage directly with refugees, regional governments and political institutions, as well as the greater international community.
“Throughout my career , both with UNHCR and prior, I have always believed that the refugee crises in the Horn of Africa, while some of the most protracted, were not unsolvable,” Ambassador Affey said. “I am honored by this appointment and encouraged by the progress we’ve already seen in bringing solutions to displaced Somalis whose lives have been in limbo for too long.”
For the last two years, Ambassador Affey has acted as the UNHCR Special Envoy for the Somalia situation, where he worked closely with the regional body IGAD (Intergovernmental Authority on Development) to develop and implement theNairobi Declaration and Plan of Action.Rooted in the United Nations New York Declaration and the Global Compact for Refugees, the declaration is focused on commitments made by governments in the region, Kenya, Djibouti, Uganda, Eritrea and Ethiopia, to take a more comprehensive approach to the Somalia refugee crisis upholding international protection standards while also working to deliver long-term solutions.
Ambassador Affey has extensive experience, notably through his previous function as IGAD’s Special Envoy to Somalia as well as serving as Kenya’s Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs and Ambassador to Somalia. The Special Envoy will be based in Nairobi, Kenya
For more information contact:
In Nairobi: Dana Hugheshughes@unhcr.org+254 733 440536
SOURCE: UN REFUGEE AGENCY