A statement released by secretary-general Ban Ki-moon has called for an immediate cease-fire to the conflict unfolding in Goma, an eastern part of the DR Congo. 100,000 refugees are now in desperate situation and the fighting has prevented their access to humanitarian assistance. Since conflict has unfolded in the region in the recent weeks, 250,000 refugees have been displaced from their homes. The secretary-general has called and mobilize a UN response to address the needs of the 100,000 refugees threatened by the conflict. Our thoughts are with those in Goma and our hope is that the fighting will end so that others will not suffer.

The International Herald Tribune featured the following article today:

GENEVA: The United Nations says the increasingly negative image of refugees is fueling racism and violence against foreigners around the world.

A senior official at the U.N. refugee agency says even countries with good reputations for protecting asylum seekers are seeing a rise in hostility toward foreigners.

Erika Feller says the growing intolerance of refugees is causing countries to tighten the laws and procedures affecting asylum seekers. She says South Africa and Ukraine are examples of countries where this has led to unprovoked and lethal attacks on foreigners.

Her comments Wednesday were part of an annual report to the agency’s governing body.

Click here to see the article.