UN marks record number for displacement on World Refugee Day

In Lebanon, Turkey, Jordan and Iraq, local communities and refugees coming together to mark World Refugee Day

Photo by: AA
Photo by: AA

Updated Jul 28, 2015

The world's refugees are often discriminated or forgotten. However this year Lebanon, Turkey, Jordan and Iraq are joining together to mark the World Refugee Day.

With total of 4 million refugees in Lebanon, Turkey, Jordan and Iraq, each countries locals are having a hard time. Education, health, accommodation and water supplies are all under enormous strain.

Despite all the pressures, local communities, councils and governments are doing their best to help the refugees. Refugees also came together to support each other to mark the World Refugee Day.

David Verboom, from  European commission’s humanitarian aid and civil protection department  (Echo ) in Amman, Jordan, said “There is a lot of media coverage highlighting the negative impact of the crisis on the refugee-hosting countries, but there are also many positive stories that never get reported,”

Verboom added “This is an attempt to redress the balance a little, to shine some light on the generosity and friendship shown towards the refugees, and vice versa, that often goes unnoticed.”

UN High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres also has released a statement to mark the importance of World Refugee Day.  "World stability is falling apart leaving a wake of displacement on an unprecedented scale. Global powers have become either passive observers or distant players in the conflicts driving so many innocent civilians from their homes," he said in the statement.

He also said "Around the world, almost 60 million have been displaced by conflict and persecution. Nearly 20 million of them are refugees, and more than half are children. Their numbers are growing and accelerating, every single day, on every continent,"

According to UN refugee agency website, UN high commissioner Guterres chose to remain in Turkey to mark World Refugee Day as a gesture of support to the country which is the biggest refugee-hosting nation in the world, largely as a result of conflict in Iraq and Syria, where the war has entered its fifth year.

Turkey now hosts more than 2 million refugees in total and spends more than $6 billion on helping Syrians alone.

Guterres also noted that more people had fled last year than at any time since the UNHCR records began, pushing the total number of  forcibly displaced people globally to a staggering 59.5 million.

He also said “In 2014, an average of 42,500 people every day became refugees, asylum-seekers or internally displaced.That is four times more than just four years ago. These people rely on us for their survival and hope. They will remember what we do."

One of the most recent consequences of the world's conflicts has been the huge growth in the numbers of refugees seeking safety through dangerous sea journeys on the Mediterranean, in the Gulf of Aden, Red Sea and in Southeast Asia which mainly ends in great tragedy.

Also according to the UNHCR report globally, one in every 122 humans is now either a refugee, internally displaced, or seeking asylum. If this were the population of a country, it would be the world's 24th largest population.

Meanwhile for the World Refugee Day, the European Commission urged leaders in Europe "to follow through on their commitment to greater solidarity and shared responsibility in addressing refugee crises. These are human lives at stake, and the European Union as a whole has a moral and humanitarian obligation to act."

TRTWorld and agencies