Over 95,000 displaced return home

A total of 95,207 internally displaced persons (IDPs) have been resettled in their communities of origin over the past 10 months, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies said. The resettlement effort has been supported by an inter-agency programme set up last year by the Liberian government - in collaboration with UN agencies, the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and the European Union - to help an estimated 187,000 IDPs to return home, the Federation told IRIN. Under the programme, the returnees and their communities have received assistance to construct basic housing, rehabilitate community infrastructure, fix roads and reactivate farming activities.

The Federation is supporting the local Red Cross society in IDP registration, distribution of relocation kits and coordination of transportation for vulnerable returnees. Now in its third phase, the programme requires additional funding to help resettle another 40,000 people from Monrovia, the Federation said. IDPs are anxious to return home but say they require shelter, while those from the southeast and western region are requesting transportation, the Federation added.

Humanitarian sources told IRIN that some IDPs are leaving Monrovia because relief food distributions have recently been terminated and they now find it easier to survive back in their home communities. Others are leaving Monrovia’s displaced centres in anticipation of government-announced demolitions of the IDP sites, sources said.

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