REFUGEES AND INTERNATIONAL PROTECTION
Every day thousands of people are forced out of their homes and out of their lives, fleeing armed conflict, persecution, torture and violence globally.
The growing global phenomenon of large displacements of refugees and migrants calls for a coordinated global response. According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), between the year 2000 and 2022, the number of people who were forced to flee violence, persecution and human rights violations rose from 17 million to a new all-time high of more of 110 million respectively. This number includes people with refugee status, as well as asylum seekers awaiting a response to their requests for international protection. Simultaneously, these numbers have also increased to historical records, reaching 36.4 million refugees and 6.1 million applicants for international protection. Children are an added concern, with nearly half of the global refugee population.
forcibly displaced people
36.4 Millions of refugees
40% are children
6.1 Millions of asylum seekers
The current situation in Ukraine is one more crisis to add to many others around the world, such as in Syria, Afghanistan, South Sudan, Myanmar or Venezuela . The escalation of conflicts and the intensification of violence forces millions of people to flee their homes and try to find a safe place.
The majority of people who flee their homes settle in their own country (58%) or in neighboring regions and countries (69%). Turkey is the country that receives the most refugees, with around 3.6 million, followed by Iran (3.4 million), Colombia (2.5 million), Germany (both with 2.1 million) and Pakistan (1.7 million).
The responses to this growing phenomenon must be global. Neighboring or/and transit countries are disproportionately affected , threatening their capabilities, infrastructure and services. Likewise, refugee and migrant humanitarian crises are increasingly frequent and protracted (with an average of 20 years for refugees), with long-term repercussions for all those involved as well as hosting communities and of origin.
A large proportion of forcibly displaced people only have the option of seeking asylum in a safe country, through extremely dangerous journeys or through mechanisms such as resettlement . This, despite being a lasting solution, is not enough.
Every year, less than 1% of refugees have the opportunity to be resettled in safe countries, leading thousands of people to desperately embark on high-risk journeys, leading to the loss of many lives.
The benefits, advantages and opportunities that safe, orderly and legal migratory movements create are substantial and are often undervalued or forgotten. On the other hand, mass forced displacements present mostly complex and worrying challenges. These global movements and the responses put in place have political, economic, social, humanitarian, development and human rights ramifications that transcend any borders.
Solid and long-lasting solutions are urgently needed to support individuals, communities and countries, while respecting human rights and the rights of refugees and applicants for international protection.