UNHCR Warns about Rising Xenophobia in Bulgaria

Society | December 7, 2013, Saturday // 15:24|  views

Photo by BGNES

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has urged Bulgarian authorities to cope with the rising wave of xenophobia against asylum seekers.

The UNHCR expressed concern over rising xenophobic violence, citing a recent assault of two Syrian nationals and a Lebanese citizen in Sofia, according to reports of the Bulgarian National Radio (BNR).

"The announcements that the Bulgarian authorities plan to increase the use of closed-type centers is also cause for concern," UNHCR Spokesperson Adrian Edwards said, stressing that an alternative solution had to be found.

"Seeking asylum is not a crime and detention must be a measure of last resort," he added.

The UNCHR criticized Bulgaria for the inadequate food and poor living conditions at the accommodation centers.

The UNCHR also pointed out that the people in most refugee centers were not getting enough food and the Organization had started handing out food supplies to the people accommodated at the center in Harmanli.

The UNCHR informed that they were cooperating with Bulgarian authorities for the provision of adequate food to all accommodation centers.

The UNCHR also drew attention to the fact that most of the refugees living in tents had been moved to unfinished buildings which needed urgent improvement of sanitary conditions.

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Tags: UNHCR, refugee center, asylum seekers, xenophobia


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