This morning, UNHCR has resumed the voluntary repatriation of tens of thousands of Ivorian refugees from Liberia. The returns had been interrupted for more than a year by the deadly Ebola outbreak. Some 11,000 of the 38,000 Ivorian refugees in Liberian camps have said they wish to return immediately.
A convoy, carrying about 244 people, set off from the coastal town of Harper, in eastern Liberia, for nearby Tabou, in south-western Côte d'Ivoire, taking a ferry to cross the river border.
A second convoy, carrying 401 people, left PTP camp in Grand Gedeh County for Toulepleu in western Côte d'Ivoire. Toulepleu is also located close to the border, about 300 kilometres to the north of Tabou.
Two more convoys are planned before the end of the year, bringing the expected number of returnees by end-2015 to more than 1,000 people. The convoys will pass along special humanitarian corridors because the borders are still closed. The returns will continue in January, with road repairs planned to improve access.
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