As of October 2018, over 11 million people are uprooted in the Great Lakes region due to armed conflicts and insecurity. This number is composed of 7.2 million internally displaced persons and 4.4 million refugees and asylum seekers originating from Burundi, the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda and South Sudan.

The high-level meeting of Ministers in charge of refugees in the Great Lakes region will be held in line with the Global Compact on Refugees adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in December 2018 as a blueprint guiding refugee response.

The high-level meeting will also seek alignment to the 2019 African Union ‘Year of Refugees, Returnees and Internally Displaced Persons in Africa: Towards Durable Solutions to Forced Displacement’.

The objectives of the meeting are as follows:

  • Raise the visibility of the scale of the refugee crisis in the Great Lakes region and the need to address the most acute life-saving needs;
  • Seek commitment from the countries of the region;
  • Request countries of the region, with the support of United Nations Country Teams, World Bank and partners, to develop socio-economic local integration plans benefiting host communities and protracted refugees creating a win-win situation focused on local development, self-reliance and resilience; and
  • Seek agreement from the countries of the region to develop a regional strategy for durable solutions for refugees.


Speke Resort Munyonyo, Kampala, Uganda


President Yoweri Museveni of the Republic of Uganda will open the meeting.

Other participants will include:

  • Government ministers in charge of displacement and refugees in the Great Lakes region;
  • United Nations Special Envoy for the Great Lakes region;
  • UNDP Administrator;
  • High Commissioner for Refugees;
  • Resident Coordinators from the 13 Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework signatory countries;
  • Regional UN Directors;
  • Regional Refugees Coordinators for the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Burundi and South Sudan;
  • Executive Secretary of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region;
  • World Bank;
  • Civil society organizations; and
  • Members of the diplomatic corps.


5-6 March: Experts meeting

7 March: Ministerial Consultation on Refugees

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Office of the Special Envoy of the United Nations Secretary-General for the Great Lakes region (OSESG-GL).