Refugees and Politics in Uganda
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It is common government rhetoric to talk of the granting of asylum as a humanitarian act. But as Loescher (1992: 34-51) has observed, refugee problems are intensely political and their causes and consequences are intimately linked to political issues. Governments therefore have to walk a tight rope in trying to balance these considerations. In the host states, refugee flows present real and potential challenges to policy makers as they can exacerbate tension and contribute to increased levels of violence in intrastate and inter-state politics. States are therefore forced to include the refugee factor on their national security calculations. This paper seeks to examine this phenomenon and show to what extent these refugees have been referred to as an issue to influence politics in Uganda. I will start with a brief background and theoretical framework to this phenomenon in Uganda, the response to this phenomenon by government, the refugees and the nationals and how all these culminated in the refugees invasion of Rwanda.