Nepal shows solidarity with refugees

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Jun 19, 2017-

The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), its partners and Nepalis across the country are standing with refugees and celebrating World Refugee Day.

On Saturday, more than 500 people from various walks of life, including government officials, diplomats, refugees of diverse nationalities, and local residents of Kathmandu Valley showed their solidarity with refugees—both in Nepal and globally—by participating in the second annual “Ride for Refugees” cycle rally south of Patan.

In the same spirit, from June 17-20 a photo and art exhibition at Labim Mall in Pulchowk is highlighting refugee stories in Nepal. The creative artworks of Sujan Dongol are on display, following his refugee-inspired exhibit at the recent Kathmandu Triennale art festival.

In Damak, a refugee fair will take place at Beldangi Refugee Camp on Tuesday to celebrate solidarity and shared bonds between local residents and Bhutanese refugees, the agency said in a statement released on Sunday.

The fair will illustrate the daily contributions refugees make to host communities and will include Nepali and Bhutanese food, handicrafts, cultural events and theatrical performances. It will bring local communities and refugees together to celebrate the many bonds they share, and the dreams to which they aspire.

“Nepal has a proud tradition of providing asylum to refugees, rooted in its diverse cultures and peoples who, collectively, have demonstrated remarkable hospitality and goodwill,” UNHCR Representative in Nepal Kevin J Allen said in a statement.

“The country has hosted Tibetan refugees since the late 1950s, Bhutanese refugees since the early 1990s and, more recently, small numbers of newly arrived refugees from diverse countries who reside in Kathmandu.”

Unlike much of the world, the number of refugees in Nepal has dramatically decreased in recent years, thanks to substantial support from the international community.

Since 2007, almost 110,000 refugees in Nepal have been resettled to the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, Norway, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands.

Those refugees who remain continue to contribute to Nepali society in various spheres—cultural, social and economic—further enriching the country.

Published: 19-06-2017 08:05

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