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Nearly 1% of world’s population, “79.5 mn” forcibly displaced globally at the end of 2019: UNHCR

Nearly 80 million people forcibly displacedIn accordance with the annual report on displacement titled “Global Trends- Forced Displacement in 2019″ released by UN refugee agency- United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), in 2019, additional 11 million people were displaced where 2.4 million sought protection outside their country, and 8.6 million were newly displaced within the borders of their countries.

  • On the Global front, the displacement number is 79.5 million or one in every 97 people on the planet at the end of 2019. This number of forced displacement has almost doubled since 2010 (41 million).
  • It should be noted that this figure is the highest since these statistics have been systematically collected. It is approximately 1% of the world’s population.

Key Points:

– Of the 79.5 mn people cited in the report, 29.6 million were refugees, 4.2 million asylum seekers and 45.7 million internally displaced people (IDPs) – those who fled to other parts of their own country.

-30 to 34 million of the world’s 79.5 million forcibly displaced, are children.

-Five countries account for two-thirds (68%) of people displaced across borders: Syria, Venezuela, Afghanistan, South Sudan and Myanmar.

– For the first time, Venezuela’s 3.5 million displaced people feature in the UNHCR report, accounting for a significant rise, compared with the 2018-19 data.

Turkey hosted the largest number of refugees, 3.9 million people (3.6 million were refugees & 0.3 million were Asylum seekers) while Developing countries hosted 85% of the world’s refugees.

-Only 317,200 refugees able to return to their country of origin and only 107,800 resettled in third countries.

-More than three-quarters of the world’s refugees (77 per cent) are caught up in situations of long-term displacement – for example the situation in Afghanistan, now in its fifth decade.

-More than eight of every 10 refugees (85 per cent) are in developing countries, generally a country neighbouring the one they fled.

-Global Trends Report counts all major displaced and refugee populations, including the 5.6 million Palestine refugees who fall under the care of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine.

-The 2030 Sustainable Development commitment of “leaving no one behind” now explicitly includes refugees, thanks to a new indicator on refugees approved by the UN Statistical Commission in March, 2020.

How COVID-19 impacted the displaced population?

The coronavirus pandemic has hit the refugee community and internally displaced people the hardest due to the health risks, loss of income and greater exposure to gender-based violence.

The border closures and travel restrictions to prevent the spread of the virus have also caused delays in the asylum-seeking process.

About UNHCR:
High Commissioner– Filippo Grandi
Headquarters– Geneva, Switzerland

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