Human Rights Watch says a repatriation program for hundreds of thousands of Somali refugees in Kenya doesn’t meet international standards for voluntary return because it is marked by fear and intimidation.
Kenya wants more than 260 000 Somali refugees to return home amid concerns that some in the Dadaab refugee camp are used by Somalia-based al-Shabaab Islamic extremists to launch attacks inside Kenya.
Kenya plans to close Dadaab, the world’s largest refugee camp, before the end of this year.
Human Rights Watch says some refugees have been told they would forfeit a $400 UN cash grant if they were deported later this year, so some leave earlier.
The rights group says many camp residents are being compelled to return to Somalia without adequate information about the dangers they face there.