Washington (May 12, 2016) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), ranking member of the Africa and Global Health subcommittee, released the following statement after the Kenyan government announced plans to close two major refugee camps that could displace nearly half a million people.


“I am deeply concerned by the Kenyan government’s plan to close two refugee camps and expel upwards of half a million people who have sought safety.  While I am sympathetic to the government’s concerns about security, Kenya has an international obligation to provide shelter to those fleeing violence and I urge it not to mislabel these refugees as seeking to harm Kenyans. The Kenyan government has demonstrated enormous compassion for the plight of those fleeing Somalia, and the United States has been a major supporter of these efforts. I call on the government of Kenya to reconsider its decision and maintain its tradition of extending a compassionate hand to neighbors most in need.”