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Germany offers additional support for refugees in Uganda 

KAMPALA Uganda (Xinhua) -- The United Nations refugee agency on Wednesday said Germany has increased its support to South Sudan refugees and host communities in Uganda by 1 million euros.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said in a statement here that the donation brings Germany’s contribution to 17 million euros between 2017-2019.

“The contribution will help UNHCR to provide protection and life-saving assistance to the refugees in Uganda. The funds will be implemented over a period of three years, including 13 million euros in 2017, 2 million in 2018 and 2 million in 2019,” the statement said.

In addition, the UN body said, the German Development Bank (KfW) signed with it a 15 million euro agreement for 2018-2021.

The KfW funds will support local capacity-building in the areas of water, education and peaceful coexistence with refugees and local communities.

“The ongoing influx of refugees from South Sudan needs to be stopped. Uganda cannot take another million of displaced people,” the statement quoted Albrecht Conze, German Ambassador to Uganda as saying. “We call upon IGAD, the EAC and the leaders of the region to make every effort for termination of the violence and fighting in South Sudan.”

The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and the East African Community (EAC) both regional bodies have been engaged in efforts to end fighting in South Sudan.

Fighting in the country started in December 2013, forcing thousands of people to flee to neighboring countries.

Uganda hosts over 1 million South Sudanese refugees, according to UN figures.



Etihad Airways pulls out of Uganda route

KAMPALA Uganda (Xinhua) -- After only two and a half years of plying the Abu Dhabi-Entebbe route, Etihad airways has thrown in the towel.

In a statement issued on Tuesday, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) national carrier said the cancellation of the Entebbe service will start March 25, 2018. Etihad launched its services between Abu Dhabi and Entebbe in May 2015.

The carrier offered options to passengers who had purchased tickets on/before Dec. 18 for travel on/after March 25, 2018 that included rebooking/rerouting and cancellation refund.

“For partially or fully unused tickets, re-booking/rerouting is available on EY and Kenyan Airways (via the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, code named NBO),” the statement read.

“Any date change fee as well as fare differences arising from the rerouting/re-booking is waived for this one instance only,” it added.

The announcement comes on the heels of a reduction in flight frequency on the Johannesburg-Entebbe route by South African Airways (SAA) recently.

Effective September, SAA reduced the frequency of flights on the route from seven to six effective Sept. 29.

Yogi Biriggwa, SAA’s Uganda country manager, described the frequency reduction as normal in the aviation industry but said this is in most cases driven by demand for the services.

Also, British Airways opted out of the London-Entebbe route over economic unviability of the route.

Despite increasing number of passengers arriving at the Entebbe International Airport, airlines’ profitability margins have come under increasing pressure as several other international airlines have flocked to the country, according to experts.



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