See 70 years of refugee travel | Human Rights Issues
As we enter 2021, there are 82.4 million people worldwide who have fled their homes as a result of war or persecution.
Thirty of them are refugees, the rest are migrants (48 million) or asylum seekers (4.1 million), according to the latest UNHCR reports. About half of all forced migrants are children.
55% of refugees come from three countries: Syria, Palestine and Venezuela.
In the midst of the COVID-19 epidemic, “everything else has come to a standstill, including the economy, but wars and conflicts and violence and discrimination and harassment, all the things that caused the people to flee, have continued,” said UNHCR chief Filippo Grandi.
Refugees during 2020
By 2020, 1.27 million people from 64 countries have become refugees. The infographic below shows the desperate trips these people took despite some of the hardships that COVID-19 brought.
Africa accounts for one third of the population displaced. By the end of 2020, at least 30.6 million people had migrated throughout the country.
By 2020, about 60,000 refugees have fled Ethiopia to neighboring countries as a result of violence in several parts of East Africa. In November 2020, fighting broke out in the northern Tigray region of Ethiopia and displaced more than a million people According to International Organization for Migration.
In the Middle East, Syrian refugees continued to flee the war for 10 years in their home country, with about 134,000 registered to leave by 2020. Half of them (65,000) fled to neighboring Turkey, which now has the largest refugee population – 3.7 people million. That same year, about a quarter of the Syrian refugees (32,500) arrived in Germany.
In Latin America, about 400,000 refugees have fled Venezuela following the country’s political and economic crisis. Of these, 139,000 fled to Peru, 80,000 to the Dominican Republic and 60,000 to Brazil.
In Asia, the UN has recorded at least 29,000 Myanmar refugees. Almost all of these refugees reached neighboring India (17,000) and Bangladesh (12,000).
In Europe, at least 89,000 refugees have fled Azerbaijan to Armenia 44 days after clashes between Armenian and Azerbaijani troops in the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region.
Across the Atlantic, in 2020, the United States received 8,500 refugees from 20 countries. About half the refugees came from just three countries: Venezuela (1,600), El Salvador (1,200), and Guatemala (1,100). This is much lower than in 2019 when the country received 32,000 refugees.
Canada received 7,500 refugees from 21 countries by 2020. The countries that came from above were Nigeria (1,400), Iran (1,200) and Hungary (629). Elsewhere in the world, Australia received only 956 refugees by 2020 – mostly from Iran.
Where is the largest refugee camp?
Refugee camps serve as temporary shelters to meet the needs of refugees. However, many people have lived in these camps for many years. According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Kenya: “Most migrants living for more than 16 years are living in temporary shelters.”
The infographic below shows the largest refugee camps around the world.
The program of Kutupalong Camp in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, and the largest refugee camp. It was set up randomly in the early 1990’s after a small number of Rohingya in Myanmar fled and robbed them in Rakhine state.
In 2017, the brutality that ravaged the state and the camp is yet to be intensified, reaching nearly 800,000 people.
On March 22, 2021, a huge fire engulfed a nearby refugee camp in Cox’s Bazar. Fifteen people were killed and tens of thousands were left homeless.
The program of Dadaab fugitives in Kenya there are three major refugee camps – Hagadera, Dagahaley and Ifo – and they have more than 200,000 refugees near the border with Somalia. Dadaab was established in 1991 after the civil war in Somalia and expanded in 2011 following drought and famine.
The program of Refugee camp in Kakuma In northwestern Kenya there are at least 150,000 refugees mainly from South Sudan and Somalia. The camp was set up in 1992 following the arrival of thousands of Sudanese children fleeing the civil war.
In March 2021, the Kenyan government announced that it would close the Dadaab and Kakuma refugee camps by June 30, 2022.
The program of Zaatari refugee camp was established in Jordan in 2012 to accommodate Syrian refugees. Today, it is the largest refugee camp in Syria. The first COVID-19 vaccine camp in a refugee camp was opened in February 2021.
70 years of escape
In 1951, the UN enacted the 1951 Refugee Convention, which was enacted to protect the rights of refugees in Europe after World War II. In 1967, the convention was enlarged to curb globalization.
The infographic below shows 70 years of refugee migration, from 1951 to 2020. The number of refugees has doubled in the last decade from 15 million in 2011 to 30 million in 2020.
The Palestinian refugee problem is one of the world’s most serious. On May 14, 1948, the British-Palestinian British Empire came to an end, sparking the first Arab-Israeli war. Zionist militias deported at least 750,000 Palestinians. According to UNHCR statistics, by 1952 the number of Palestinian refugees was 867,000. Today, that figure is 5.7 million.
Afghanistan has been devastated by war for 40 years. From 1979 to 1989, the country was part of the last Cold War in which Soviet troops fought a bloody war against Afghanistan’s mujahideen. For the next ten years, the government struggled. Twelve years after the Soviet departure, Afghanistan re-entered, this time with the US. The highest number of refugees in Afghanistan was recorded in 1990 when 6.3 million refugees were reported.
Which countries have the largest refugee population today?
Of the 6.7 million people, Assyria is the modern-day refugee, followed by the Palestinians (5.7 million) and the Venezuelans (4 million). By 2020, 88% of the world’s refugees come from only 12 countries.
Upon receipt, 65% of the world’s refugees live in only 16 countries. Turkey has the largest number of refugees (3.7 million) followed by Jordan (3 million) and Colombia (1.7 million).
In Europe, Germany has an estimated 1.2 million people, the highest number of contractors.
According to the UNHCR, developing countries make up 86% of the world’s refugees.