The newly appointed UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees) Representative in Nepal, Steven Craig Sanders, presented his Letter of Credentials to Minister for Foreign Affairs, Madhav Prasad Ghimire, Wednesday.
Sanders has replaced the outgoing UNHCR Representative in Nepal, Stephane Jacquemet.
Sanders, an American national, has worked with the UN Refugee Agency since 1992 in a number of countries including Bangladesh, Sudan, Indonesia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Malawi and at UNHCR Headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, stated the UNHCR, Kathmandu.
Before coming to Nepal, he served as the UNHCR Representative in Bangladesh, Dhaka. Mr. Sanders had also previously served as the UNHCR Deputy Representative in Khartoum, Sudan, from 2006 to 2010, according to the UNHCR.
Upon assuming office, Sanders said, “I am delighted to be in Nepal a country rich in culture and natural beauty and look forward to maintaining an effective working relationship with the Government of Nepal, members of the diplomatic community, UN Agencies, non-governmental organisations and all other major stakeholders and interlocutors in the refugee programme in Nepal.”
Since late 2007, UNHCR has helped nearly 80,000 refugees from Bhutan start new lives in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, Norway, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom. The agency also carries out a range of other protection and assistance programmes for some 38,000 refugees from Bhutan in the Beldangi and Sanischare camps in eastern Nepal.
UNHCR’s work in Nepal also includes providing protection and assistance to around 350 urban refugees and asylum seekers, helping find solutions for people without access to citizenship certificates, and facilitating the safe transit of Tibetan new arrivals to a third country.
Sanders arrived in Nepal on 20 May 2013. He will be joined by his wife and two daughters, according to the UNHCR.