Source: Hidden and exposed: urban refugees in Nairobi, Kenya, Humanitarian Policy Group, Overseas Development Institute, March 2010
As of 2013, Kenya hosted approximately 600,000 refugees and asylum-seekers. As of January 2013, 56,000 asylum seekers and refugees were registered with UNHCR in Nairobi and other urban centres in Kenya. The largest segment of this group is comprised of Somalis (33,844), followed by Ethiopians (10,568), and nationals from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (7,046). A minority comes from Eritrea, South Sudan and the Great Lakes. (UNHCR, http://www.unhcr.org/510275a09.html)
Highly mobile population, in spite of the encampment rule (see below). According to UNHCR 2010 figures, there were almost as many women as men among the urban refugee population of Nairobi.
1951 Convention: signatory
1967 Protocol: signatory
1969 OAU Convention: signatory
Refugee Act, 2007
Relocation of Urban Refugees to Officially Designated Camps Order, 16 January 2013: the Government of Kenya, more specifically the Department for Refugee Affairs (DRA) under the Ministry of Immigration and Registration of Persons has the overall responsibility for all administration, coordination and management of refugee matters. The Government of Kenya has directed that refugees must reside in designated camps to qualify for assistance. Kenya considers itself as only a country of asylum for as long as a refugee has a mandate, is in the process of acquiring or renewing one. Under international law, it is the responsibility of UNHCR to supervise the implementation of the 1951 Convention and monitor the protection of refugees. UNHCR took over the responsibility of refugee affairs management and RSD in 1992 from the Kenyan government following the continued increase and influx of refugees. (Refugee Consortium of Kenya)
Kenya’s global displacement needs and UNHCR’s ﬁnancial requirements to respond have risen over recent years, from USD 185.7 million in 2010 to a revised 2013 budget of USD 251.6 million. This growth was driven primarily by successive inﬂuxes and the need to respond to emergencies. In 2014, the ﬁnancial requirements for UNHCR’s operation in Kenya have decreased by USD 22.6 million to USD 229 million, when compared to the revised 2013 budget. This is largely due to the Dadaab population veriﬁcation, which revealed approximately 20 per cent fewer people than the 2009-2010 veriﬁcation, owing to departures and demographic trends.
Amnesty International, 2012, Kenya’s decision to confine refugees and asylum-seekers in camps is unlawful
Campbell E. 2006. Urban Refugees in Nairobi: Problems of Protection, Mechanisms of Survival, and Possibilities for Integration, in Journal of Refugee Studies, Vol. 19, Issue 3, pp. 396-413.
Campbell E., Crisp J. and Kiragu E. 2011. A review of the implementation of UNHCR’s urban refugee policy in Kenya’s capital city, UNHCR’s Policy Development and Evaluation Service (PDES) (Geneva).
Human Rights Watch. 2013, Kenya: Don’t Force 55,000 Refugees Into Camps
Human Rights Watch. 2013. You are all Terrorist Kenyan Police Abuse of Refugees in Nairobi (May)
Karanja L. 2010. “The Educational Pursuits and Obstacles for Urban Refugee Students in Kenya”, in the International Journal for Cross-Disciplinary Subjects in Education (IJCDSE), Volume 1, Issue 3
Kituo Cha Sheria and others v. The Attorney General, Kenya: High Court, 26 July 2013
Refugee Consortium Kenya. 2014. Standard-Refugees ordered to relocate to Kakuma, Dadaab camps as urban registration centers shut. (March)
Office of the Kenyan President.2013. Order for Relocation of Urban Refugees to Officially Designated Camps (January)
Republic of Kenya, the Government of the Federal Republic of Somalia and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. 2013. Tripartite Agreement Between the Governing the Voluntary Repatriation of Somali Refugees Living in Kenya
Metcalfe V., Pavanello S. and Mishra P. 2011. Sanctuary in the city? Urban displacement and vulnerability in Nairobi, London, Humanitarian Policy Group, Overseas Development Institute (London).
Pavanello S., Elhawary S. and Pantuliano S. 2010. Hidden and Exposed Urban Refugees in Nairobi, Kenya, Humanitarian Policy Group Working Paper, Overseas Development Institute (London).
UNHCR and the Danish Refugee Council. 2012. Living on the Edge: A Livelihood Status Report on Urban Refugees Living in Nairobi, Kenya
UNHCR. 2014. Kenya: UNHCR disturbed by arrests and deportations of Somali refugees