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Posts Tagged ‘Bhatanese refugees’

NEPAL: Government to merge Bhutanese refugee camps

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on March 1, 2011

KATHMANDU, 28 February 2011 (IRIN) – The Nepalese government hopes to turn the seven Bhutanese refugee camps

Photo: David Swanson/IRIN Thousands of Bhutanese refugees have been resettled

in eastern Nepal into two over the next two years.

“Given the large number of people that have been resettled, this is a logical move,” Jay Mukunda Khanal, head of Nepal’s National Unit for the Coordination of Refugee Affairs, told IRIN, adding: “We hope to complete this effort by the end of 2012.”

Known as `Lhotsampas’ in Bhutan, the refugees are Bhutanese citizens of Nepalese origin who have been living in the camps since the early 1990s when some 108,000 fled to Nepal after being evicted from their homes by the Bhutanese government, which had passed a law stripping them of their citizenship.

According to the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), more than 43,500 Bhutanese refugees have been resettled in third countries since 2007.

As of 28 February, the USA had accepted the largest number (just over 37,000), followed by Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Norway, Denmark, the Netherlands and the UK.

Currently there are 69,203 refugees in seven camps: Beldangi I, Beldangi II, Beldangi II extension, Khudunarabari, Timai and Goldhap (all in Jhapa District); and Sanischare (Morang District).
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