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The Number of Salvadoran Refugees Abroad Continues to Rise

The UNHCR August 2023 bulletin indicates that 117,718 internally displaced persons were assisted in the country.

By Xiomara Alfaro
Abr 15, 2024- 21:44

The number of Salvadorans in need of protection and humanitarian aid is high and growing in El Salvador. This is stated in the diagnostic report on the characteristics and causes of Salvadoran migration (2018-2023) by the Human Rights Association for Legal Protection “María Julia Hernández” and the Committee of Relatives of Deceased and Missing Migrants of El Salvador (COFAMIDE) presented last week.

When talking about the mobility of Salvadorans, says the study that is based on data from international organizations such as UNHCR, this not only covers refugees, refugee seekers, immigrants and migrants, but also refers to people in conditions of internal displacement and vulnerability, to whom importance must be given.

During the first six months of 2023, the number of Salvadoran refugees around the world stood at 62,248 people, exceeding the 58,621 registered in 2022.

The upward trend also continued in the number of Salvadorans seeking asylum. 148,758 applications were presented in 2022, a figure that tripled in relation to the no more than 49 thousand that were had in 2019. For the first half of 2023, 143,500 were already counted.

Photo EDH/ Archive

The report, which is based on data from the United Nations Refugee Organization Agency (UNHCR), El Salvador, indicates that by 2022, 104 refugees and 54 asylum seekers will be registered in the country; while by 2023 asylum seekers increased to 148.

The Legal Guardianship report also refers to the number of people within El Salvador who need protection or some type of humanitarian aid and who are assisted by UNHCR; the UN agency categorizes them as “Other interest groups” (OOC).

These are not refugees or asylum seekers, but they are of interest to UNHCR because they present profiles that require activating international protection mechanisms or humanitarian aid.

Within this category in 2022, 6,205 people were registered, a figure that was surpassed in the first six months of 2023, when there were 9,275.

Another of the categories of greatest application for cases of Salvadoran people are host communities.

“We are talking about a community that hosts large populations of refugees or internally displaced people, whether in camps, integrated into homes or independently,” Medrano points out.

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