Record 114 mn People Displaced Worldwide: UN
GENEVA, (IANS) – The number of people displaced by war, persecution, violence, and human rights violations globally is likely to have exceeded 114 million at the end of September, the United Nations (UN) Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has said.
By the end of June this year, 110 million people had been forcibly displaced worldwide, up 1.6 million from the end of 2022. In the three months from June to the end of September, the number of forcibly displaced grew by 4 million, bringing the total to 114 million.
The conflict in the Middle East erupted on October 7, beyond the period covered by the UNHCR, therefore the report does not consider its consequences in terms of human displacement.
According to the agency, the main drivers of forced displacement in the first half of 2023 included violence, droughts, floods, and insecurity.
“The world’s focus now is – rightly – on the humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza. But globally, far too many conflicts are proliferating or escalating, shattering innocent lives, and uprooting people,” UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi said.
“The international community’s inability to solve conflicts or prevent new ones is driving displacement and misery. We must look within, work together to end conflicts, and allow refugees and other displaced people to return home or restart their lives,” he said.
Low and middle-income countries hosted 75 percent of the refugees and other people in need of international protection, the UNHCR said, adding that globally, 1.6 million new individual asylum applications were made in the first six months of this year, the largest number ever recorded.
According to the agency, the second Global Refugee Forum, the world’s largest gathering of refugees and other forcibly displaced people, is scheduled to be held in Geneva, Switzerland, on December 13-15 this year.