Lucy Hovil:Why is the cost of hosting refugees falling on the world’s poorest states?

ESPMI Network

4256 Women and children queue up for food at Dadaab, the world’s largest refugee camp, which the Kenyan government is threatening to close. Photograph: Roberto Schmidt/AFP/Getty Images

The government of Kenya says it plans to close Dadaab, the world’s largest refugee camp, which hosts approximately 330,000 people, as well as shutting the Department of Refugee Affairs (DRA). The announcement, on Friday 6 May, was no doubt a pre-election stunt of Trump-like proportions that plays to an electorate’s fear of generating instability and outsiders taking jobs, playing to the same xenophobic narrative that has become commonplace in election campaigns across the world. It has been met with outrage and concern by many national and international actors alike – and, more important, by the hundreds of thousands of refugees whose lives are likely to be affected by this decision. Others have dismissed it as an empty threat, albeit a dangerous and irresponsible one.

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