On Monday 3 September, 195 refugees departed from Shousha transit camp - located seven kilometers from the Tunisa-Libya border - to Germany to start a new life. The refugees had initially fled to to Libya, before being uprooted again last year because of the civil war in Libya. The largest number of refugees originate from Sudan (Darfur), Somalia, Eritrea and Ethiopia. Most are single males between the age of 18 and 35, although there are also 20 families with children and 3 unaccompanied minors.
This group is the first to be resettled under the new German resettlement programme. Announced in 2012, the programme aims to resettle 300 refugees per year for the next three years (2012-2014). During 2009-10, Germany resettled 2501 Iraqi refugees from Syria and Jordan on an ad-hoc basis. In December 2011, and based on the success of this programme, the German government decided to participate regularly in UNHCR’s resettlement programme by establlishing an annual resettlement quota. For the remaining 2012 quota, another 100 individuals will be selected from the Iraqi refugee population in Turkey.