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24 persons displaced every minute, says UNHCR

24 persons displaced every minute, says UNHCR
June 20
16:22 2016

Twenty-four persons are displaced every minute and one in 113 people on earth is either a refugee, asylum seeker or internally displaced, according to the UN refugee agency.

UNHCR’s annual global trends said tracks forced displacement, 65.3 million people were displaced as of the end of 2015 , compared to 59.5 million people 12 months ago, making it the worst refugee situation the world has ever known.

Over half of the total comes from just three countries – Syria, Afghanistan and Somalia.

“The total of 65.3 million comprises 3.2 million people in industrialized countries who as of end 2015 were awaiting decisions on asylum (the largest total UNHCR has recorded), 21.3 million refugees worldwide (1.8 million more than in 2014 and the highest refugee total since the early 1990s), and 40.8 million people who had been forced to flee their homes but were within the confines of their own countries (an increase of 2.6 million from 2014 and the highest number on record),” UNHCR said.

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The organisation said the refugee crisis poses a level of risk that knows no precedent.

It said the reasons for the rise in displacements are “situations that cause large refugee outflows are lasting longer (for example, conflicts in Somalia or Afghanistan are now into their third and fourth decades, respectively)”.

Also, UNHCR points out that “dramatic new or reignited situations are occurring frequently (today’s largest being Syria, but also in the space of the past five years South Sudan, Yemen, Burundi, Ukraine, Central African Republic, etc.), and the rate at which solutions are being found for refugees and internally displaced people has been on a falling trend since the end of the Cold War.”

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It described as worrisome a situation where 24 persons are displaced every minute.

“As recently as 10 years ago, at the end of 2005, UNHCR recorded an average of six people displaced every minute. Today that number is 24 per minute – almost double the typical frequency at which adults breathe,” Filippo Grandi, UN High Commissioner for Refugees, said.

“More people are being displaced by war and persecution and that’s worrying in itself, but the factors that endanger refugees are multiplying too.”

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