Libyan refugees who fled the violence in Libya walk at the newly opened refugee camp for Libyan families in Ramada, some 25 km from the southern Tunisian Libyan border of Dehiba, Tunisia, 10 May 2011 | Photo: EPA/MOHAMED MESSARA
Libyan refugees who fled the violence in Libya walk at the newly opened refugee camp for Libyan families in Ramada, some 25 km from the southern Tunisian Libyan border of Dehiba, Tunisia, 10 May 2011 | Photo: EPA/MOHAMED MESSARA

The number of refugees in the world has hit a record of 70 million, the United Nations said in a statement. That’s the highest figure since World War II.

People are fleeing war, persecution and the consequences of global warming, the German branch of the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) said in a statement on Sunday, one day ahead of World Humanitarian Day on August 19.

At the end of 2018, a total of 70.8 million people were forced to flee their homes. The figure includes refugees, asylum seekers and internally displaced people.

At the end of 2016, this number stood at 65.5 million. As of now, 25 people have to flee every minute and 37,000 people flee every day.

The majority of refugees are hosted in developing countries – 84 percent – and the number of refugees and asylum seekers in Europe continues to drop.

Refugees, displaced persons, asylum seekers

Most people of concern are internally displaced persons. In 2018, 41.3 million people fled from conflict and violence to other parts of their country. Colombia, Syria and the Democratic Republic of Congo continue to top the list of internally displaced people.

The number of refugees who have fled their country is at its highest mark ever recorded – 25.9 million. Two-thirds of all refugees come from five countries: Syria, Afghanistan, South Sudan, Myanmar and Somalia.

The third group entails persons seeking international protection in another country. At the end of 2018, there were 3.5 million asylum seekers who were waiting for their asylum decision, according to the UNHCR.

 

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