Displaced people hits record 60m: UN
The number of people displaced by war, conflict and persecution reached a record level of nearly 60 million across the world in 2014, says a UN report.
The annual report by UN refugee agency UNHCR on Global Trends, says 59.5 million people forcibly displaced at the end of 2014 compared to 51.2 million a year earlier.
Asia is the world’s major displacement producing regions and the number of refugees and internally displaced people here grew by 31 percent in 2014 to 9 million people, shows the report released today.
Syria has the world’s biggest number of displaced people (7.6 million) and refugees (3.88 million at the end of 2014). Afghanistan (2.59 million) and Somalia (1.1 million) are the next biggest refugee source countries.
“Continuing displacement was seen in and from Myanmar in 2014, including of Rohingya from Rakhine state and in the Kachin and Northern Shan regions,” it stated.
In 2014, an average of 42,500 people became refugees, asylum seekers, or internally displaced every day, representing a four-fold increase in just four years. Worldwide, one in every 122 humans is now either a refugee, internally displaced, or seeking asylum.
“We are witnessing a paradigm change, an unchecked slide into an era in which the scale of global forced displacement as well as the response required is now clearly dwarfing anything seen before,” said UN High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres.
In 2014 just 126,800 refugees were able to return to their home countries, the lowest number in 31 years.
HALF ARE CHILDREN
UNHCR’s report shows that in 2014 alone 13.9 million became newly displaced – four times the number in 2010.
Worldwide there were 19.5 million refugees (up from 16.7 million in 2013), 38.2 million were displaced inside their own countries (up from 33.3 million in 2013), and 1.8 million people were awaiting the outcome of claims for asylum (against 1.2 million in 2013).
Alarmingly, over half the world’s refugees are children.