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Executive Summary for March 5th

We review the latest issues related to refugees, including Sudan sees new refugee arrivals from South Sudan, U.S. police diversity officers highlight municipal efforts at integration and more refugees leave Nauru for the U.S.

Published on March 5, 2018 Read time Approx. 2 minutes

Sudan Gears up for More South Sudan Refugees in White Nile State

White Nile State in Sudan is braced for a new influx of South Sudanese refugees. The top official in the state said eight refugee camps have been seeing new arrivals in recent days.

Sudan has received 770,110 South Sudanese refugees since conflict in the newly created South Sudan flared in December 2013. Other estimates say the population of southerners who have fled fighting is nearer 1.3 million.

The civil war in South Sudan has sent more than 2 million refugees spilling across the border to Uganda, Ethiopia, Kenya and Sudan.

The White Nile state secretary general, Al-Tayeb Mohamed Abdallah, said the area had received nearly 150,000 refugees, with more expected. The U.N. refugee agency said it recorded 3,000 refugees arriving in Sudan in the first half of January. The U.N. expects as many as 200,000 more southern refugees to cross into Sudan during 2018.

Refugees in Sudan have been split between the states of Khartoum, White Nile, South Kordofan and East Darfur, the last two of which are already facing internal conflicts.

The scale of the South Sudan refugee crisis is straining humanitarian resources in East Africa and Sudan.

Diversity Officer Shines Light on U.S. Police Efforts With Immigrant Communities

Police in Columbus, Ohio, have employed an immigrant officer as their New American Diversity and Inclusion Officer. Khaled Bahgat, an Egyptian immigrant, is among a new wave of experimental officers in the U.S. meant to help break down barriers between refugee and immigrant communities and law enforcement.

“There has definitely been some areas where law enforcement doesn’t understand the culture, and likewise the culture doesn’t understand why we do the things that we do,” Bahgat told worshippers at a Columbus mosque that mainly serves the Somali community.

Similar appointments have been made in Houston, Minneapolis and Washington, D.C., among other cities, and underline the gap between the Trump administration’s approach to immigration and that of individual U.S. cities.

Police chief James Cervera, of Virginia Beach, a coastal city in southeastern Virginia, said Filipino-American officers are frequently in touch with the city’s Filipino community.

“It’s very hard to hate up close,” he said.

More Refugees Leave Nauru for the U.S.

Dozens of refugees have left the Pacific island of Nauru for the U.S.

Four more families left on March 4, comprising eight children and single men from Sri Lanka, Afghanistan and Pakistan.

This is the fifth group to have left Nauru since September 2016 under the deal between Australia and the U.S.

Ian Rintoul of the Refugee Action Coalition in Australia said that although the government has denied that any nationalities were excluded from the U.S. deal, there were indications otherwise. He said it was remarkable that no Iranian, Somalis or Sudanese have been accepted this year.

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