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Transnational Issues

Disputes – international

Tanzania still hosts more than a half-million refugees, more than any other African country, mainly from Burundi and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, despite the international community's efforts at repatriation. Disputes with Malawi over the boundary in Lake Nyasa (Lake Malawi) and the meandering Songwe River remain dormant.

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Tanzania hosts one of the largest refugee populations in Africa, at just over 683,000, because of massive refugee influxes after recurrent conflicts in Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Most of the Congolese refugees originate from Fizi, in South Kivu Province.

Tanzania is also home to refugees from Somalia and Rwanda.

The refugees live in 12 camps in northwestern Tanzania where they are assisted by the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR), and in three largely self-sufficient settlements.

Some of the challenges facing refugees include their lack of the right to work legally and lack of freedom of movement, leaving them dependent on assistance from UNHCR and its partners to meet their basic needs.

UNHCR is seeking to help 75,000 Burundian and 48,000 Congolese refugees to return home in 2007 with progress towards finding durable solutions for refugees in Tanzania being closely linked to political developments in Burundi and the DRC, according to the agency.

The refugee agency's programmes in the country cover the needs of camp-based refugees, support for refugee-hosting areas and repatriation of Burundian refugees.

There are an estimated 300,000 to 500,000 refugees from Burundi and DRC who have settled in several villages in the northwestern parts of the country, with some reported to have arrived in the early 1970s, according to the Tanzanian government.

Illicit drugs

Tanzania is playing a growing role in transshipment of Southwest and Southeast Asian heroin and South American cocaine destined for South African, European and US markets and of South Asian methaqualone bound for southern Africa. Money laundering also remains a problem.





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