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06:44, 27 June 2017 Tuesday
Update: 14:35, 18 August 2011 Thursday

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Somali refugees ask Turkey, Muslims to build hospital, school, mosque
Somali refugees ask Turkey, Muslims to build hospital, school, mosque
Source: IHH

Kenyan children getting education inside huts want Turkey to open particularly vocational schools and teach them technical education.

Muslim refugees, who came from drought-hit Somalia and settled into Dadaab Refugee Camp in Kenya, ask Turkey and other Muslim countries to construct hospital, school and mosque in the camps they are living.

The Muslim refugees in Dadaab said the assistance and investments made by the UN to the camps were insufficient, and noted that UN member Muslim countries, including Turkey, should research the outcome of the aid that have provided. They also want Turkey and other Muslim countries to send representatives if necessary to take part in distribution of the assistance.

The Somali refugees said the assistance made by Turkey elated them, noting, "our children study under burning sun in shanty wooden huts. Current mosques in Dadaab are not adequate. A few new mosques may solve the problem."

Meanwhile, Kenyan children getting education inside huts want Turkey to open particularly vocational schools and teach them technical education.

Construction of a vocational high school by the UN is underway in the region.

Turkish journalists visited Hagedera Hospital constructed by International Rescue Committee (IRC) aid organization in Dadaab city, which is near Kenya's border with Somalia.

Most of those people waiting for treatment suffer cataract, a curable eye disease. Dust and the unsanitary living conditions are the main cause of this disease.

A.A correspondent interviewed with an ophthalmologist who said he treated 20 patients within a few hours, noting hundreds of others were waiting outside for treatment.

Murat Kavakdan, deputy chairman of the Turkish charity organization IHH Humanitarian Aid Foundation, told the A.A correspondent that there were few schools and hospitals in Kenya, Somalia, Ethiopia, Djibouti and Uganda, "people living in this region, particularly in Somalia, need support of Turkey and Muslim countries. We think Turkey should open educational institutions in the region. We have witnessed that Somali Muslims give high importance to their children. Children are trying to learn the Koran and the alphabet which they wrote on the wood. There will be very positive developments if Turkey opens educational institutions in the region," he said.

Kavakdan said the UN has three hospitals in camps in the region, "the hospitals were planned for 90,000 refugees. There are more than 500,000 people in the camps today. Number of refugees approached 600,000. Doctors working in the hospitals of the UN went on a strike because of the high number of patients. This region urgently needs hospital. We have invited Turkish journalists to the region on purpose. They have seen the difficulties and urgent educational and health needs on the spot," he said.

"Turkish aid"

Meanwhile, Turkish aid society, Turk Kizilayi or Turkish Red Crescent, has collected more than 42 million Turkish lira (TL) as part of an assistance campaign for Somalia.

Red Crescent stated on Thursday that donations sent for the campaign reached 42,428,588,008 TL. (one USD equals 1.774 TL)

The money collected from SMS sent by cell phones is 6.9 million TL, from internet 2.2 million TL, from call centers 555,000 TL, and from banks reached 32.6 million TL.

Turkish Religious Affairs Foundation's deputy director general Ismail Palakoglu also told A.A that the teams of the foundation set up an office in Somali capital Mogadishu ten days ago.

Noting that so far 120 tons of assistance had been sent from Turkey to Somalia by planes and 120 tons more would be sent too, Palakoglu said that 1,500 tons of assistance sent by ships would reach Somalia in the next 18 days.

Palakoglu said that their teams were distributing assistance to 500 families everyday.

He also said that the Foundation and Turkish Prime Ministry Religious Affairs Directorate collected 80 million TL for Somali people so far.

Tens of thousands of people are suffering from drought and famine in Somalia and head for refugee camps in Kenya and Ethiopia in search of food and water. Turkey, on Wednesday, hosted an extraordinary meeting of the Organization of the Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Istanbul to discuss the recent situation in Somalia, the reasons of hunger crisis and what can be done for Somali people.



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Cyprus president seeks peace deal in Switzerland
Cyprus president seeks peace deal in Switzerland

Cypriot president Nicos Anastasiades said Monday he hopes to clinch a reunification deal laying out a new security blueprint for the divided island during a crunch summit in Switzerland this week. Anastasiades will attend United Nations-backed talks at the Alpine Crans-Montana ski resort Wednesday with "complete determination and goodwill... to achieve a desired solution", he said in a statement. He said he hopes to "abolish the anachronistic system of guarantees and intervention rights", with a deal providing for the withdrawal of the Turkish army. The eastern Mediterranean island has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded its northern third in response to an Athens-inspired coup seeking union with Greece. Turkey maintains around 35,000 troops in northern Cyprus. The so-called guarantor powers of Turkey, Britain and Greece retain the right to intervene militarily on the island. Greek and Turkish Cypriots are at odds over a new security blueprint, but their leaders are under pressure to reach an elusive peace deal. "I am going to Switzerland to participate in the Cyprus conference, with the sole aim and intent of solving the Cyprus problem," Anastasiades said. Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci is also set to attend the summit, which is expected to last at least 10 days. Greece, Turkey and Britain will send envoys along with an observer from the European Union. UN-led talks on the island hit a wall in late May after the sides failed to agree terms to advance toward a final summit. Unlocking the security question would allow Anastasiades and Akinci to make unprecedented concessions on core issues. But they have major differences on what a new security blueprint should look like. Anastasiades's internationally recognised government, backed by Athens, seeks an agreement to abolish intervention rights, with Turkish troops withdrawing from the island on a specific timeline. Turkish Cypriots and Ankara argue for some form of intervention rights and a reduced number of troops remaining in the north. Turkish Cypriots want the conference to focus on broader issues of power-sharing, property rights and territory for the creation of a new federation. Much of the progress to date has been based on strong personal rapport between Anastasiades and Akinci, leader of the breakaway Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. But that goodwill has appeared frayed in the build-up to their meeting in Switzerland. The Greek Cypriot presidential election next February has also complicated the landscape, as has the government's search for offshore oil and gas, which Ankara argues should be suspended until the negotiations have reached an outcome.