UNHCR warns of the largest number of displaced people on record: 120 million

The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) today warned of apathy and inaction in the face of the increase in the number of forcibly displaced people, which reached 120 million in May, reaching new historic levels.

Conflicts from Sudan to Gaza, passing through Myanmar, are causing new displaced people, which requires an urgent solution, the UNHCR defended today, in a statement, when presenting the 2024 report.

“Forced displacement reached new historic levels around the world last year,” according to the United Nations Agency’s global trends report.

The increase to 120 million registered in May represented the 12th consecutive annual increase and reflects both new and changing conflicts, as well as “an inability to resolve long-standing crises”, the document reads.

The displaced population is approximately equivalent to the 12th largest country in the world, Japan.

The UNHCR refers to “the devastating conflict” in Sudan as determining the increase in the number of displaced people. At the end of 2023, 10.8 million Sudanese remained uprooted.

“In the Democratic Republic of Congo and Myanmar, millions of people were internally displaced last year due to violent fighting. UNRWA [agência para os refugiados palestinianos] estimates that by the end of last year, around 1.7 million people (75% of the population) had been displaced in the Gaza Strip by catastrophic violence, the majority of whom were Palestinian refugees. Syria continues to be the largest displacement crisis in the world, with 13.8 million people forcibly displaced within and outside the country”, according to the same source.

The agency recalled that behind these numbers are human tragedies and people in urgent need of help.

“It is high time that the parties to the conflict respect the basic laws of war and international law. The fact is that without better cooperation and concerted efforts to resolve conflicts, violations Human rights and the climate crisis, displacement numbers will continue to rise, bringing new misery and costly humanitarian responses”, warned the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi , mentioned in the statement.

The biggest increase in the number of displaced people resulted from people fleeing conflict and staying in their own country, to 68.3 million people, according to the Internal Displacement Monitoring Center, meaning an increase of almost 50% over five years.

The number of refugees and other citizens in need of international protection has risen to 43.4 million.

The vast majority of refugees are hosted in neighboring countries, with 75% residing in low- and middle-income countries that together produce less than 20% of the world’s income.

The report also reveals that, worldwide, more than five million internally displaced people and one million refugees returned home last year.


Francesco Giganti

Journalist, social media, blogger and pop culture obsessive in newshubpro

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