Global displacement and proportion displaced, 2007-2017. Globally, the forcibly displaced population increased in 2017 by 2.9 million. By the end of the year, 68.5 million individuals were forcibly displaced worldwide as a result of persecution, conflict, or generalized violence. As a result, the world’s forcibly displaced population remained yet again at a record high Graphic: UNHCR

Number of people newly displaced per day, 2003-2017. Graphic: UNHCR

By Morgan Winsor
20 June 2018

(ABC News) – Record high numbers of men, women, and children were driven from their homes across the world last year due to war, violence, and persecution, according to a new report by the United Nations' refugee agency.

The UNHCR's annual Global Trends study found that a staggering 68.5 million people worldwide had been forcibly displaced by the end of 2017.

Nearly a quarter of them were uprooted just last year, either for the first time or repeatedly. That's an average of one person displaced every two seconds of the day, the study says.

"Now, more than ever, taking care of refugees must be a global –- and shared –- responsibility," Filippo Grandi, the U.N. high commissioner for refugees, said in a statement Wednesday. "It’s time to do things differently."

"On World Refugee Day, it’s time to recognize their humanity in action -– and challenge ourselves, and others, to join them –- in receiving and supporting refugees in our schools, neighborhoods, and workplaces," he continued. "This is where solidarity starts –- with all of us."

The report was published Tuesday ahead of World Refugee Day, amid global outrage over a "zero-tolerance" policy enacted by U.S. President Donald Trump that is forcibly separating immigrant children from their parents at the border with Mexico. Thousands of Central Americans are fleeing violence and poverty in their home countries -- including El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras -- and are risking their lives to reach the United States.

Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein, the U.N. high commissioner for human rights, has described the immigration policy as "government-sanctioned child abuse" and urged the U.S. government to end the controversial practice.

"In the past six weeks, nearly two thousand children have been forcibly separated from their parents," al-Hussein said in a statement Monday. "The thought that any State would seek to deter parents by inflicting such abuse on children is unconscionable."

According to the UNHCR report, the humanitarian crisis in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the civil war in South Sudan and the flight of hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees from Myanmar into Bangladesh were the leading causes of forcible displacement last year.

The global displacement figure for 2017 includes 25.4 million refugees who fled their countries to escape conflict and persecution, the study says. That's 2.9 million more refugees than the year before -- the steepest increase UNHCR has ever seen in a single year.  [more]

On World Refugee Day 2018, a record 68.5 million forcibly displaced last year


Number of returned refugees, 1992-2017. Graphic: UNHCR

19 June 2018 (UNHCR) – Citing ongoing, protracted violence around the globe and a lack of solutions to conflicts as reasons for the increase, Filippo Grandi said that “continuous pressure on civilians” caught up in fighting, had pushed them to leave their homes.

More than two thirds of all refugees worldwide originated from only a handful of countries, the High Commissioner told journalists in Geneva.

Top of the list is Syria, where seven years of brutal fighting have forced more than 6 million people to seek shelter abroad, followed by Afghanistan (2.6 million) and South Sudan (2.4 million).

Responding to a question about ongoing concerns over 1.5 million Syrian refugees in neighbouring host countries, including Lebanon, the High Commissioner stressed that “it’s not a question of ‘if’, but ‘when’” they will return to Syria — once conditions allow.

New disputes in 2017 were also significant contributors to global displacement.

These include the exodus of more than 700,000 Rohingya refugees from Myanmar to Bangladesh last year, the UNHCR chief said, adding that it is still not safe for them to return, as well as 1.5 million Venezuelans who had sought shelter in neighbouring countries in Latin America.

The High Commissioner also expressed concern for the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where violence has spread to formerly peaceful areas of the vast country and caused displacement figures to double in 2017, to 4.4 million.

The report also found that 85 per cent of the 68.5 million displaced last year came from poor or middle-income countries.

This, Mr. Grandi added, “should be an element dispelling the notion” that the so-called crisis is only in the rich world, “which it is not”.

He added: “It continues to be a crisis mostly of the poor world — so, people from poor countries moving to poor countries, or staying within their country, as displaced.”

In addition, 70 per cent of the world’s displaced are nationals of just 10 countries, according to the UNHCR report.

This is also significant, Mr. Grandi said, because “it means, frankly, that if there were solutions to conflicts to these countries — or some of them at least — this number could start to come down. But we haven’t seen any significant progress in peacemaking or peacebuilding in any of these 10 countries.”

Despite the rise in displacement driven by persecution and violence and the lack of conflict resolution, the High Commissioner struck a positive note, saying that UNHCR is helping to find solutions to the pressures caused by mass displacement.

To date, 14 countries, including in Latin America and Africa, have implemented positive measures to cope with an influx of refugees, the UNHCR chief said, noting that his agency continues to coordinate international efforts to create a fairer protection system for people forced to flee their countries.

The upcoming Global Compact on Refugees follows the 2016 New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants, in which all 193 UN Member States agreed that the responsibility for helping all those in need of international protection must be borne more equitably and predictably.

UNHCR has been engaged in consultations with Governments and other stakeholders to develop a draft compact which Mr. Grandi will present to the General Assembly later this year.

Nearly three million more displaced year-on-year, warns refugee agency chief, but solutions are within reach

0 comments :

 

Blog Template by Adam Every . Sponsored by Business Web Hosting Reviews