Immigration Group Expects 40,000 New Refugees Soon
AMMAN, Jordan (AP) _ An international relief agency said Sunday that it expected up to 40,000 foreigners to flee Iraq and Kuwait soon and appealed to world governments for $13.5 million in contributions to repatriate them.
″IOM estimates that between 25,000 and 40,000 foreign residents of Iraq and Kuwait remain in need of international repatriation in the short term,″ the International Organization for Migration said in a statement.
The European Community immediately announced it had allocated $4.9 million to repatriate thousands of Sri Lankan refugees expected to cross into Jordan before Nov. 4.
Neither organization provided an explanation for why the flood of refugees was expected.
Not long after Iraq’s Aug. 2 invasion of Kuwait, the migration organization launched a major repatriation program for refugees from Iraq and Kuwait who had landed in Turkey, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Jordan.
The organization said it had flown home 122,307 evacuees since Sep. 3, including 114,633 from Jordan.
Jordanian Interior Ministry official Salameh Hammad said last week that although 100,000 Asian and Arab refugees were stuck in the country at one point in mid-September, the desert camps are almost empty now.