Just three countries support over 50% of the World’s refugees
The Norwegian Refugee Council has revealed that just three countries are home to over half of all off the world’s refugees: Turkey, Bangladesh and Uganda.
Today, 20th June, marks World Refugee Day. The Council also noted that the world has never experienced such a large number of people displaced by war and persecution.
Jan Egeland, Secretary General of the Norwegian Refugee Council, noted:
“International responsibility-sharing for displaced people has utterly collapsed. Rich countries are building walls against families fleeing war, at the same time as less money is available for aid to people in conflict areas"
At the start of 2018 the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) reported that 68.5 million had been forced to flee their homes, the equivalent to the entire population of the United Kingdom. Of these, 40 million were displaced within their own country and 28.5 million had left their home country.
Jan Egeland added:
"International cooperation and peace diplomacy are in deep crisis. The number of people displaced worldwide is increasing for the sixth year in a row, and fewer people are safely returning home”
Turkey received the most refugees in 2017, 700,000 people, mostly from Syria. In total, Turkey is home to 3.8 million refugees. Comparatively, all other European countries combined are home to 500,000 refugees, the United States received 60,000.
Approximately 20% of all new refugees in 2017 settled in Turkey.
Jan Egeland commented on this stark contrast:
“When so few asylum seekers are arriving Europe and the US, we have the responsibility to increase our support to less rich countries that are currently hosting a large number of refugees, like Bangladesh, Lebanon and Uganda, and increase the number of people we receive for resettlement"
Bangladesh received the second highest number of refugees in 2017, owing primarily to the Rohingya refugee crisis. Bangladesh received 18% of 2017’s refugees and Uganda received 15%.
So far this year Uganda has only received 7% of the funding needed for the UN and other development organisations to support the refugees.
Jan Egeland warned of the unsustainability of just a few countries supporting a large percentage of global refugees:
"The safety net we put in place after Second World War and which has provided millions of refugees with protection, is now being upheld by an increasingly small number of countries. If these countries do not receive sufficient support, the whole protection system will unravel. If so, this will have dramatic consequences not only for the people affected, but also for the stability and security in many parts of the world"
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Image credit: Norweigen Refugee Council