The World's Largest Refugee Camp Turns 20

Surrounding the small town of Dadaab, Kenya, is one of the oldest and largest refugee camps in the world, now home more than 332,000 people, mainly from Somalia. (It was originally designed to house just 90,000.) The complex of camps was first established as a temporary solution more than 20 years ago by the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR), after Somalia descended into a civil war that continues to this day. According to UN estimates, more than 31,000 additional Somalis have arrived in the camps this year alone, as drought and continuing violence between Somali Government forces and Al-Shabaab militants have forced them to seek long-term refuge. To deal with overcrowding, sanitation, and health problems, UNHCR officials were looking to expand the complex by opening a fourth camp, but Kenyan authorities have frozen the plan due to security concerns. These photos offer a view into life in Dadaab.

Read more
Hints: View this page full screen. Skip to the next and previous photo by typing j/k or ←/→.

Most Recent

  • Gleb Garanich / Reuters

    Visiting Chernobyl 32 Years After the Disaster

    Today marks the anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. On April 26, 1986, technicians conducting a test inadvertently caused the fourth reactor to explode, causing the world’s worst civil nuclear disaster.

  • A Sunny Seattle Day

    I’ve been traveling recently, and was unable to compose a proper photo story for today, so I hope you’ll indulge me if I just share a few pictures I took in and around Seattle yesterday.

  • P. Medicus / Getty

    Travel Monday: A Photo Trip to Socotra

    Off the coast of Yemen, in the Arabian Sea, lies the isolated Socotra Island, where hundreds of plants and animals have developed into unique species.

  • The Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library / Ricardo Thomas

    Photos From State Dinners Past

    As the Trumps prepare to host their first state dinner on Tuesday, a look back at state dinners held by past U.S. presidents, from Eisenhower to Obama.