UN refugee agency alarmed over situation in southern Colombia

14 November 2005

Following the flight of more than 500 Colombians to Ecuador over the weekend, the United Nations refugee agency said today it was "very concerned" about the humanitarian situation in the southern part of Colombia, where armed combat has been reported.

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said that the refugees, from the Putumayo and Nariño areas, represent the biggest such influx this year, with new arrivals reporting that there are many more people on their way.

There are also reports that some of those arriving are badly wounded.

UNHCR said it is working with local authorities, the Red Cross and other UN agencies to provide shelter and food for the asylum-seekers in Ecuador and will continue to monitor the situation in Colombia.


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