UNHCR handed over Balkhi temporary refugee accommodation center to the Committee of Emergency Situations

3 weeks ago tngadmin Comments Off on UNHCR handed over Balkhi temporary refugee accommodation center to the Committee of Emergency Situations

The UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR, completed the construction works at the Balkhi temporary accommodation center and handed over the completed infrastructure to the Committee of Emergency Situations and Civil Defense of the Republic of Tajikistan.

As part of the collective refugee emergency preparedness efforts, in October 2021, the Committee of Emergency Situations and Civil Defense (CoESCD) together with UNHCR and other international organizations started the construction of a temporary refugee accommodation center within the existing Anti-Hail Centre in Jaloliddin Balkhi district in Khatlon province. The temporary settlement was established for the accommodation of refugees that could also be used to shelter persons affected by natural disasters as well as for simulation exercises and training of rescue staff. The Anti-Hail Center belongs to CoES and is 52 km away from the Tajik-Afghan border.

UNHCR, in partnership with other humanitarian agencies within Refugee Coordination Model, has engaged in various humanitarian and development actors together to construct temporary accommodation facilities, water pumping and drainage, setting up electricity lines, an electricity transformer, and power generators. UNHCR, together with the Aga Khan Agency for Habitat (AKAH), carried out construction works on the installment of a temporary shelter, the Refugee Housing Units, while UNICEF built all the related Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) infrastructure, including the installment of the water tower to provide the settlement with continuous access to water. The total UNHCR contribution to the Center amounted to USD 411,618. The capacity of the Balkhi temporary accommodation center allows to host up to 500 individuals. As of now, all the planned construction works have been completed, and the settlement has been handed over to CoESCD for use in case of refugee emergencies or natural disasters.

“The Balkhi refugee accommodation center – is a unique product of joint coordination and collaboration of multiple humanitarian and development partners, who brought together their capacity, resources, and knowledge to support the Committee of Emergency Situations and Civil Defense in preparation to the possible refugee emergencies.” – said Mr. Mulugeta Zewdie, UNHCR Representative in Tajikistan during the Handover Ceremony.

The Center was created against the background of unstable security and political situation in neighboring Afghanistan last year when government structures and the international community remained at a high level of alert and preparedness for the possible emergency. On March 18 this year, Balkhi temporary accommodation center saw the visit of Filippo Grandi, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, who also appreciated the collective efforts undertaken to create the Balkhi settlement and encouraged all engaged in continuing this positive cooperation.

Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees