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Last Updated:  Tuesday, 1 April, 2003, 17:21 GMT 18:21 UK
Liberian refugees feared drowned
By Alhassan Sillah
BBC, Conakry, Guinea

Some 14,000 Liberians have crossed the border into Guinea after fleeing heavy fighting between Liberian government forces and Lurd rebels around the northeast border town of Ganta.

Aid agencies confirmed that the refugees, mainly unaccompanied children and the elderly, have arrived in the Guinean border town of Bala.

Reports say some of the refugees swam across the Macona River, that divides the two countries in that region, as the Guinean side of the common frontier between the two states is officially closed.

Humanitarian agencies say that an unspecified number of people, including children, died in the process of trying to cross the river, as they could not swim properly.

A UNHCR spokesman in Conakry said that the refugees are being moved to a camp in Leine in Lola Prefecture, where the government has agreed to the building of an extension of the camp for the incoming refugees.

Also, the UNHCR said that some 4,000 Ivorian refugees who have been camped at the Nonah refugee camp in the N'zerekore region, are being moved to camps in Albaderia, in the Kissidougou region.




SEE ALSO:
Liberian rebels open new fronts
31 Mar 03  |  Africa
Rebel 'massacres' in Liberia
07 Feb 03  |  Africa
Timeline: Liberia
04 Mar 03  |  Country profiles


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