More than 110 million displaced or refugees in the world
More than 110 million people currently live in a situation of displacement or forced exile, the UN said on Wednesday, which sees in this record number an act of “accusation” against the state of the world.
The war in Ukraine, the stampede of refugees from Afghanistan, and the fighting in Sudan have raised these balances unstoppably in recent times
The annual report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) specified that the number of displaced persons and refugees has increased by almost two million due to fighting in Sudan. Since the end of 2021, the increase in people in a situation of forced displacement, within or outside their countries, increased by 19.1 million, the largest increase since the UN agency began preparing these balances in 1975. The figure of 110 million was reached in May.
“A true indictment against the state of our world”
“There are some 110 million people who fled their homes because of conflict, persecution, discrimination, and violence, often combined with other reasons and in particular the impact of climate change,” said UNHCR chief Filippo Grandi at a press conference in Geneva. He added that these figures are “a true indictment against the state of our world.”
Number on the rise
Of the global total registered in 2022, 35.3 million people sought refuge in other countries, and 62.5 million were internally displaced. Additionally, 5.4 million asylum seekers and 5.2 million people, mainly Venezuelans, asked for international protection. Grandi expressed concern that the numbers will continue to rise, as the environment becomes more hostile towards refugees.
“Requesting asylum is not a crime”
Grandi considered the British government’s plans to send asylum seekers to Rwanda “are not a good idea.” He also expressed concern about the new difficulties faced by applicants to obtain asylum in the United States, with the introduction of new regulations. Grandi welcomed the agreement reached by the European Union (EU) to provide a “relatively fair” response to people on the move. He urged the EU, the United States, and the United Kingdom to keep their doors open to asylum seekers.
Fear for Sudan
Grandi urged global action to alleviate the causes and impacts of displacement and highlighted the UNHCR’s financial struggles this year. The agency received only 16% of the expected funds to aid internally displaced people in Sudan and only 13% of the necessary sums to help host countries. The balance also included the presence of 6.5 million Syrian refugees at the end of 2022, with 3.9 million in neighboring Turkey. Last year, some 339,000 refugees returned to their countries, and 5.7 million internally displaced persons returned to their lands. Turkey, Iran, Colombia, Germany, and Pakistan are the countries hosting the largest number of refugees.