United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees

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Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
Emblem of the United Nations.svg
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Logo.png
AbbreviationUNHCR, HCR
Formation14 December 1950;69 years ago (1950-12-14)
TypeUnited Nations Programme
Legal status Nonprofit
Headquarters Geneva, Switzerland
Head
High Commissioner for Refugees
Filippo Grandi
Parent organization
United Nations General Assembly
United Nations Economic and Social Council
Website www.unhcr.org
A coloured voting box.svg   Politicsportal

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) is a UN agency mandated to aid and protect refugees, forcibly displaced communities, and stateless people, and to assist in their voluntary repatriation, local integration or resettlement to a third country. It is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, with over 17,300 staff working in 135 countries. [1]

Contents

UNHCR was created in 1950 to address the refugee crisis that resulted from World War II. The 1951 Refugee Convention established the scope and legal framework of the agency's work, which initially focused on Europeans uprooted by the war. Beginning the late 1950s, displacement caused by other conflicts, from the Hungarian Uprising to the decolonization of Africa and Asia, broadened the scope of UNHCR's operations. Commensurate with the 1967 Protocol to the Refugee Convention, which expanded the geographic and temporal scope of refugee assistance, UNHCR operated across the world, with the bulk of its activities in developing countries. [2] By its 65th anniversary in 2015, the agency had assisted more 50 million refugees worldwide.

As of June 2020, UNHCR has over 20 million refugees under its mandate. [3] Consequently, its annual budget has grown from US$300,000 in 1951 to US$8.6 billion in 2019, making it one of the largest UN agencies by expenditure. [3] [4] The vast majority of UNCHR's budget comes from voluntary contributions, mostly from member states; the largest donors are the United States, the European Union, and Germany. [5] The agency's work includes providing protection, shelter, healthcare and emergency relief, assisting in resettlement and repatriation, and advocating for national and multilateral policies on behalf of refugees. [6]

In recognition of its work, UNHCR has won two Nobel Peace Prizes, in 1954 and 1981 [7] and a Prince of Asturias Awards for International Cooperation in 1991. It is a member of the United Nations Development Group, a consortium of organizations dedicated to sustainable development. [8]

History

Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Genf UNHCR.JPG
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees

Following the demise of the League of Nations and the formation of the United Nations the international community was acutely aware of the refugee crisis following the end of World War II. In 1947, the International Refugee Organization (IRO) was founded by the United Nations. [9] The IRO was the first international agency to deal comprehensively with all aspects of refugees' lives. Preceding this was the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration, which was established in 1944 to address the millions of people displaced across Europe as a result of World War II. [9]

In the late 1940s, the IRO fell out of favor, but the UN agreed that a body was required to oversee global refugee issues. Despite many heated debates in the General Assembly, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees was founded as a subsidiary organ of the General Assembly by Resolution 319 (IV) of the United Nations General Assembly of December 1949. However, the organization was only intended to operate for 3 years, from January 1951, due to the disagreement of many UN member states over the implications of a permanent body. [9]

UNHCR's mandate was originally set out in its statute, annexed to resolution 428 (V) of the United Nations General Assembly of 1950. This mandate has been subsequently broadened by numerous resolutions of the General Assembly and its Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). [9] According to UNHCR,

[its] mandate is to provide, on a non-political and humanitarian basis, international protection to refugees and to seek permanent solutions for them. [9]

Soon after the signing of the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees, it became clear that refugees were not solely restricted to Europe. In 1956, UNHCR was involved in coordinating the response to the uprising in Hungary. Just a year later, UNHCR was tasked with dealing with Chinese refugees in Hong Kong, while also responding to Algerian refugees who had fled to Morocco and Tunisia in the wake of Algeria's war for independence. The responses marked the beginning of a wider, global mandate in refugee protection and humanitarian assistance. [9]

Decolonization in the 1960s triggered large refugee movements in Africa, creating a massive challenge that would transform UNHCR; unlike the refugee crises in Europe, there were no durable solutions in Africa, and many refugees who fled one country only found instability in their new country of refuge. By the end of the decade, two-thirds of UNHCR's budget was focused on operations in Africa and in just one decade, the organization's focus had shifted from an almost exclusive focus on Europe. [9]

In 1967, the Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees was ratified to remove the geographical and temporal restrictions of UNHCR under the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees. As the Convention was confined to the refugee crisis in the aftermath of World War II in Europe, the Protocol was made to address the “new refugee situations that have arisen since the Convention was adopted and the refugees concerned that may therefore not fall within the scope of the Convention”. [10]

In the 1970s, UNHCR refugee operations continued to spread around the globe, with the mass exodus of East Pakistanis to India shortly before the birth of Bangladesh. Adding to the woes in Asia was the Vietnam War, with millions fleeing Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam. [9]

The 1980s saw new challenges for UNHCR, with many member states unwilling to resettle refugees due to the sharp rise in refugee numbers over the 1970s. Often, these refugees were not fleeing wars between states, but inter-ethnic conflict in newly independent states. The targeting of civilians as military strategy added to the displacement in many nations, so even 'minor' conflicts could result in a large number of displaced persons. Whether in Asia, Central America or Africa, these conflicts, fueled by superpower rivalry and aggravated by socio-economic problems within the concerned countries, durable solutions continued to prove a massive challenge for the UNHCR. As a result, the UNHCR became more heavily involved with assistance programs within refugee camps, often located in hostile environments. [9]

The end of the Cold War marked continued inter-ethnic conflict and contributed heavily to refugee flight. In addition, humanitarian intervention by multinational forces became more frequent and the media began to play a big role, particularly in the lead up to the 1999 NATO mission in Yugoslavia, while by contrast, the 1994 Rwandan Genocide had little attention. The genocide in Rwanda caused a massive refugee crisis, again highlighting the difficulties for UNHCR to uphold its mandate, and the UNHCR continued to battle against restrictive refugee policies in so called 'rich' nations. [9]

Function

UNHCR packages containing tents, tarps, and mosquito netting sit in a field in Dadaab, Kenya, on 11 December 2006, following disastrous flooding UNHCR DADAAB REGION, KENYA AFRICA DOD 2006.JPEG
UNHCR packages containing tents, tarps, and mosquito netting sit in a field in Dadaab, Kenya, on 11 December 2006, following disastrous flooding

UNHCR was established on 14 December 1950 [11] and succeeded the earlier United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration. The agency is mandated to lead and co-ordinate international action to protect refugees (other than Palestinian refugees, who are assisted by UNWRA) and resolve refugee problems worldwide. Its primary purpose is to safeguard the rights and well-being of refugees. It strives to ensure that everyone can exercise the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge in another state, with the option to return home voluntarily, integrate locally or to resettle in a third country.

UNHCR's mandate has gradually been expanded to include protecting and providing humanitarian assistance to whom it describes as other persons "of concern," including internally displaced persons (IDPs) who would fit the legal definition of a refugee under the 1951 United Nations Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and 1967 Protocol, the 1969 Organization for African Unity Convention, or some other treaty if they left their country, but who presently remain in their country of origin. UNHCR presently has major missions in Lebanon, South Sudan, Chad/Darfur, Democratic Republic of Congo, Iraq, Afghanistan as well as Kenya to assist and provide services to IDPs and refugees in camps and in urban settings.

UNHCR maintains a database of refugee information, ProGres, which was created during the Kosovo War in the 1990s. The database today contains data on over 11 million refugees or about 11% of all displaced persons globally. The database contains biometric data, including fingerprints and iris scans and is used to determine aid distribution for recipients. The results of using biometric verification have been successful. When introduced in Kenyan refugee camps of Kakuma and Dadaab in the year 2013, the UN World Food Programme was able to eliminate $1.4m in waste and fraud. [12]

To achieve its mandate, the UNHCR engages in activities both in the countries of interest and in countries with donors. This includes hosting expert roundtables to discuss issues of concern to the international refugee community.

Palestine refugee mandate

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) has a wider definition of "refugee" than does UNHCR, as it includes the patrilineal descendants of refugees resulting from the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. Refugees who meet the UNRWA definition are ineligible for assistance from UNHCR.

Public awareness and future of refugees

UNHCR 50th anniversary. Stamp of Tajikistan, 2001. UNHCR Stamps of Tajikistan 2001.jpg
UNHCR 50th anniversary. Stamp of Tajikistan, 2001.

Several new programs have recently been introduced to support and to heighten awareness of the issues faced by refugees around the world. These two new programs are a product of the benchmarks set out by the United Nations Millennium Development Goals.

The UNHCR works in different regions of the world to raise awareness about the refugee crisis and the needs of these refugees.

Since 2009, the UNHCR acknowledged a large presence of migration and refugees in the Caribbean, where the refugee crisis remained largely unreported. [13] The issue stems from refugees who, instead of applying to the U.N., improperly search for asylum in the United States, ultimately failing to reach their destination and remaining in the Caribbean. [14] However, migrant laws in most of these nations lacked any protections for asylum-seekers, including the ability to be recognized as such. [13] In response, the UNHCR organized talks with these nations in Costa Rica in 2009, [14] seeking to address the lack of protections for refugees and their prosecution as unauthorized migrants. [13] A refugee-seeker applies through the U.N. for placement and an asylum-seeker applies within the Country in which asylum is sought. This is why some Countries label refugees as illegal when they did not apply through the U.N. for placement and entered the country unlawfully.

In 2007, UNHCR offices in Canada launched an aggressive media campaign to shed light on the plight of refugees. [15] This campaign was meant to humanize the refugee crisis by showing refugees living in the midst of disturbing conditions. Using emotional appeals to raise public awareness, the campaign hoped to increase the interest of particularly "30 to 45-year-old professionals who are generally well educated, well-read, but have not had direct experience or knowledge of refugee issues,” [15] according to fund-raising officer Jonathan Wade.

In Ireland, the UNHCR works to inform the public through different channels. The UNHCR in Ireland actively pursues media relations and "[they] supply the media with accurate and reliable information coupled with our unique insight based on our refugee protection mandate and role as one of the world’s leading humanitarian agencies". [16] It also engages its community by holding public events with the aim of informing people about current refugee crises. One of these is the annual UNHCR/SARI Fair play Football Cup. [16]

The UNHCR was prominent in helping Syrian refugees in Lebanon. When the Lebanese government was unable to withstand the influx of refugees, the UNHCR stepped in and eased the displacement for the refugees mainly by offering food and healthcare. They also helped register the refugees, so they would not be considered illegal in the eyes of the Lebanese government (Janmyr).

Artworks on refugee crisis and artists as activists for refugees

Many contemporary artists had art workshops and art project and took many initiatives for refugees including artist Ai Weiwei and Anish Kapoor led London walk of compassion for refugees walking from the Royal Academy of Arts to the Orbit. Among art exhibitions and artworks on refugees, celebrity artist Ai Weiwei created an inflatable artwork is 230 feet long which he exhibited at Prague’s National Gallery and Sydney Biennale in 2018,The human rights activist has brought a 196-foot-long inflatable installation to Sydney’s Cockatoo Island as one of the cornerstones of the Biennale of Sydney exhibition. Ai states: ‘There’s no refugee crisis, only a human crisis… In dealing with refugees we’ve lost our very basic values. In this time of uncertainty, we need more tolerance, compassion and trust for each other, since we are all one, otherwise humanity will face an even bigger crisis.’ Danish artist OLAFUR ELIASSON’S GREEN LIGHT welcomes conversation about refugee crisis. In Paris walls along the Seine a photo exhibition along the banks included a 370-meter long panorama featuring portraits of refugees and photographs titled “Dreams of Humanity” taken by Syrian refugee children living in Iraq which was organized in collaboration with famous photojournalist Reza in partnership with UNHCR. Bangladeshi artist Firoz Mahmud has been conducting an art project on refugees, displaced people and minorities, titling 'Soaked Dream project' of dream and future desire of those deprived and underprivileged people which he exhibited at Bangkok Art Biennale curated by Apinan Poshyananda, Lahore Biennale, Dhaka Art Summit, MAXXI Rome, Office for Contemporary Art, Oslo and many cities in the world. The Harmony Art Collective had an exhibition of young refugees made murals together in Darling Quarter, Sydney.

Cooperation within the United Nations

As UNHCR is a programme governed by the UN General Assembly, and the UN Economic and Social Council, it cooperates with many other programs and agencies under the United Nations in order to effectively protect the rights of refugees.

On 19 September 2016, UN General Assembly hosted the UN Summit for Refugees and Migrants, a high-level summit to address large movements of refugees and migrants, with the aim of bringing countries together behind a more humane and coordinated approach. [17] Leaders of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, UN Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women, UN Office on Drugs and Crime, and The World Bank were present. The summit addressed the root causes and drive for migration and the necessity of global cooperation. As a result of this summit, the United Nations unveiled a draft set of principles that urge the international community to build on the momentum set by the adoption of the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants (2016). [18] [19] Specifically, the 20 draft principles focus on human rights; non-discrimination; rescue and assistance; access to justice; border governance; returns; violence; detention; family unity; child migrants; women migrants; right to health; adequate standard of living; decent work; right to education; right to information; monitoring and accountability; migrants’ human rights defenders; data; and international cooperation. [20]

On 28 September 2016, the UNHCR partnered with the UN Food and Agricultural Organization in Tehran for the Solutions Strategy for Afghan Refugees. FAO highlighted the contributions to be made by FAO towards SSAR objectives on livelihood related activities including livestock and fishery initiatives as well as nutritional projects in Iranian schools.

FAO and UNHCR are committed to increasing refugees’ access to livelihood opportunities and reducing dependency on humanitarian aid. Of late, a joint livelihood strategy for South Sudan was launched looking to address this issue with a clearly defined action plan. The strategy targets both refugees (70 percent) and local communities (30 percent) in refugee-hosting areas across the country. [21]

Awards

Since 1954, the UNHCR Nansen Refugee Award has been annually awarded to a person or an organization in recognition of outstanding service to the cause of refugees, displaced or stateless people.

The UNHCR itself was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1954 and 1981. The UNHCR was awarded the Indira Gandhi Prize in 2015.

In 1991 was awarded with the prestigious Prince of Asturias Award for International Cooperation. [22]

Persons of concern to UNHCR

The UNHCR's Mid-Year Trends report of June 2015 (based on information for mid-2015 or latest available information up to that date) reported an "unprecedented" 57,959,702 individuals falling under its mandate (for reference, on January the 1st, 2007, 21,018,589 people - or less than half of the number in 2015 - fell under the mandate of the UNHCR). The sharp increase was mainly attributed to the Syrian Civil War, "with the outbreak of armed crises or the deterioration of ongoing ones in countries like Afghanistan, Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Mali, Somalia, South Sudan and the Ukraine contributing to prevailing trends." [23]

Persons of concern include refugees and asylum-seekers, people in refugee-like conditions, internally-displaced people (IDPs), stateless persons and "others of concern to the UNHCR".

Aerial view of Zaatari refugee camp for Syrian refugees in Jordan, July 2013 An Aerial View of the Za'atri Refugee Camp.jpg
Aerial view of Zaatari refugee camp for Syrian refugees in Jordan, July 2013

Sorted by the UNHCR bureau in which refuge or asylum is sought, the number for June 2015 included:

2019

10,000,000
20,000,000
30,000,000
40,000,000
50,000,000
60,000,000
70,000,000
80,000,000
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018

Staffing

As of November 2018, the UNHCR employed a staff of 16,765 people in 138 countries. [24]

High Commissioners

High Commissioner of the UNHCR
Emblem of the United Nations.svg
Filippo Grandi April 2016 (26380573300) (cropped).jpg
Incumbent
Filippo Grandi

since January 2016
High Commissioner for Refugees
Reports to UN General Assembly
AppointerUN General Assembly
Term length 5 years
Formation1 January 1951;69 years ago (1951-01-01)
First holder Gerrit Jan van Heuven Goedhart
Website Official website

The UN General Assembly elects High Commissioners every five years. High Commissioners are supported by the 'Executive Committee to the High Commissioner's Programme' and he or she has to make annual reports to the UN General Assembly and needs to follow their directives. [25] The current High Commissioner is Filippo Grandi, who has held the post since 1 January 2016. [26] Prior to the establishment of the UNHCR, Fridtjof Nansen was the League's High Commissioner for Refugees. The post of High Commissioner has been held by: [27]

No.High CommissionerTook officeLeft officeTime in officeNationality
0
Bundesarchiv Bild 102-09772, Fridjof Nansen.jpg
Nansen, Fridtjof Fridtjof Nansen
(1861–1930)
League of Nations High Commissioner
1 September 192119274–5 yearsFlag of Norway.svg  Norway
1
HeuvenGoedhart1944.jpg
Goedhart, Gerrit Jan van Heuven Gerrit Jan van Heuven Goedhart
(1901–1956)
1 January 19518 July 19565 years, 189 daysFlag of the Netherlands.svg  Netherlands
2
Dr. August Lindt, Swiss Ambassador the the United States signs Mayor John F. Collins' guestbook (13563357194).jpg
Lindt, August R. August R. Lindt
(1905–2000)
8 July 19563 November 19604 years, 118 daysFlag of Switzerland.svg   Switzerland
3
Blank.png
Schnyder, Félix Félix Schnyder
(1910–1992)
3 November 196031 December 19655 years, 58 daysFlag of Switzerland.svg   Switzerland
4
Sadruddin Aga Khan (1991) by Erling Mandelmann.jpg
Khan, Sadruddin Aga Sadruddin Aga Khan
(1933–2003)
1 January 196631 December 197711 years, 364 daysState Flag of Iran (1964).svg  Iran
5
Poul Hartling.jpg
Hartling, Poul Poul Hartling
(1914–2000)
1 January 197831 December 19857 years, 364 daysFlag of Denmark.svg  Denmark
6
Blank.png
Hocké, Jean-Pierre Jean-Pierre Hocké  [ de ]
(born 1938)
1 January 198631 December 19893 years, 364 daysFlag of Switzerland.svg   Switzerland
7
Thorvald Stoltenberg 2009.jpg
Stoltenberg, Thorvald Thorvald Stoltenberg
(1931–2018)
1 January 19903 November 1990306 daysFlag of Norway.svg  Norway
8
Sadako Ogata - World Economic Forum on Africa 2008.jpg
Ogata, Sadako Sadako Ogata
(1927–2019)
3 November 199031 December 200010 years, 59 daysFlag of Japan.svg  Japan
9
Ruud Lubbers, 2011 (cropped).jpg
Lubbers, Ruud Ruud Lubbers
(1939–2018)
(Resigned due to internal investigation)
1 January 200120 February 20054 years, 50 daysFlag of the Netherlands.svg  Netherlands
Wendy Chamberlin, May 2003 cropped.jpg
Chamberlin, Wendy Wendy Chamberlin
(born 1948)
Acting
24 February 20052 June 200598 daysFlag of the United States.svg  United States
10
Antonio Guterres meeting with Iranian Interior Minister 01.jpg
Guterres, António António Guterres
(born 1949)
2 June 200531 December 201510 years, 212 daysFlag of Portugal.svg  Portugal
11
Filippo Grandi April 2016 (26380573300) (cropped).jpg
Grandi, Filippo Filippo Grandi
(born 1957)
1 January 2016Incumbent4 years, 303 daysFlag of Italy.svg  Italy

Special Envoy of High Commissioner Filippo Grandi

After 10 years serving as a Goodwill Ambassador, Angelina Jolie was promoted in 2012 to Special Envoy to the High Commissioner. In this role she represents the UNHCR and High Commissioner Filipo Grandi at the diplomatic level and works to facilitate long-term solutions for people displaced by large-scale crises, such as Afghanistan and Somalia. "This is an exceptional position reflecting an exceptional role she has played for us," said a UNHCR spokesman.

Goodwill ambassadors

UNHCR is also represented by a number of UNHCR Goodwill Ambassadors, who at present are:

Previous ambassadors include:

Controversies

The 1994-95 repatriation of Rohingyans

According to some scholars, with time UNHCR left an initial preference for asylum and resettlement policies, tending to prefer repatriation measures of refugees instead. Sometimes, this might have led the agency's bureaucratic apparatus to adopt pathological behaviours. [28]

An example of the latter might be considered[ according to whom? ] the handling of the 1995 Rohingyan crisis. At the time, thousands of Rohingyans were fleeing Burma (or Myanmar), seeking shelter in UNHCR camps in Bangladesh. According to some,[ who? ] UNHCR has been decisive in promoting the repatriation of refugees, although NGOs on the field and the UN were skeptical about better political and security conditions in Burma. [29] [ citation needed ]

Also, controversies arose on the methods with which the UNHCR staff was conducting surveys in the camps to establish if refugees were willing to move back to Burma or not. [29]

See also

Related Research Articles

A refugee, generally speaking, is a displaced person who has been forced to cross national boundaries and who cannot return home safely. Such a person may be called an asylum seeker until granted refugee status by the contracting state or the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) if they formally make a claim for asylum. The lead international agency coordinating refugee protection is the United Nations Office of the UNHCR. The United Nations has a second office for refugees, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), which is solely responsible for supporting the large majority of Palestinian refugees.

An asylum seeker is a person who has fled their home country because of war or other factors harming them or their family, enters another country, and applies for asylum, that is, international protection, in this other country. An asylum seeker is an immigrant who has been affected by forced displacement and may become considered a refugee. The terms asylum seeker and refugee are often confused.

Internally displaced person

An internally displaced person (IDP) is someone who is forced to flee his or her home but who remains within his or her country's borders. They are often referred to as refugees, although they do not fall within the legal definitions of a refugee.

Refugee camp Temporary settlement for refugees

A refugee camp is a temporary settlement built to receive refugees and people in refugee-like situations. Refugee camps usually accommodate displaced persons who have fled their home country, but camps are also made for internally displaced people. Usually, refugees seek asylum after they have escaped war in their home countries, but some camps also house environmental and economic migrants. Camps with over a hundred thousand people are common, but as of 2012, the average-sized camp housed around 11,400. They are usually built and run by a government, the United Nations, international organizations, or non-governmental organization. Unofficial refugee camps, such as Idomeni in Greece or the Calais jungle in France, are where refugees are largely left without support of governments or international organizations.

Forced displacement Coerced movement of a person or persons away from their home or home region

Forced displacement is the involuntary or coerced movement of a person or people away from their home or home region. This movement may have been caused by a variety of factors including natural disasters, violence, ethnic cleansing, individual or group persecution, droughts, civil wars, deportation and population transfer. The UNHCR defines 'forced displacement' more narrowly as: displaced "as a result of persecution, conflict, generalized violence or human rights violations".

In international law, a stateless person is someone who is "not considered as a national by any state under the operation of its law". Some stateless people are also refugees. However, not all refugees are stateless, and many people who are stateless have never crossed an international border. On November 12, 2018, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees warned there are about 12 million stateless people in the world.

Refugee law is the branch of international law which deals with the rights and duties States have vis-a-vis refugees. There are differences of opinion among international law scholars as to the relationship between refugee law and international human rights law or humanitarian law. The discussion forms part of a larger debate on the fragmentation of international law. While some scholars conceive each branch as a self-contained regime distinct from other branches, others regard the three branches as forming a larger normative system that seeks to protect the rights of all human beings at all time. The proponents of the latter conception view this holistic regime as including norms only applicable to certain situations such as armed conflict and military occupation (IHL) or to certain groups of people including refugees, children, and prisoners of war.

Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees United Nations multilateral treaty

The Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, also known as the 1951 Refugee Convention or the Geneva Convention of 28 July 1951, is a United Nations multilateral treaty that defines who a refugee is, and sets out the rights of individuals who are granted asylum and the responsibilities of nations that grant asylum. The Convention also sets out which people do not qualify as refugees, such as war criminals. The Convention also provides for some visa-free travel for holders of refugee travel documents issued under the convention.

Refugees of Iraq

Refugees of Iraq are Iraqi nationals who have fled Iraq due to war or persecution. Throughout the past 30 years, there have been a growing number of refugees fleeing Iraq and settling throughout the world, peaking recently with the latest Iraq War. Precipitated by a series of conflicts including the Kurdish rebellions during the Iran–Iraq War, Iraq's Invasion of Kuwait (1990) and the Gulf War (1991), the subsequent sanctions against Iraq, and culminating in the violence during and after the American-led invasion and occupation of Iraq, millions have been forced by insecurity to flee their homes in Iraq. Unlike most refugees, Iraqi refugees have established themselves in urban areas in other countries rather than in refugee camps. In April 2007, there was an estimate of over four million Iraqi refugees around the world, including 1.9 million in Iraq, 2 million in neighboring Middle East countries, and around 200,000 in countries outside the Middle East. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has led the humanitarian efforts for Iraqi refugees. The Iraqi displacement of several million is the largest in the Middle East, and is much larger than the number of Palestinians who were displaced in 1948 during the creation of the state of Israel.

Bruno Geddo is an Italian national, born in Milan on October 30, 1959. He has served with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) for over 30 years in Sub-Saharan Africa, North Africa and the Middle East.

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Representation in Cyprus

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Representation in Cyprus is an office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) opened in August 1974 upon the request of the Government of Cyprus and the Secretary-General of the United Nations. UNHCR Representation in Cyprus was designated as Coordinator of the United Nations Humanitarian Assistance for Cyprus. UNHCR was also responsible upon the request of the Cyprus Government to examine applications for refugee status.

Azerbaijani SSR was one of the first republic of Soviet Union that faced the problem of refugees and internally displaced persons. The refugees are ethnic Azerbaijanis from Armenia and the internally displaced persons are ethnic Azerbaijanis from Nagorno-Karabakh and the seven adjacent rayons which are controlled by the self-proclaimed Nagorno-Karabakh Republic.

Iraqis in Turkey includes Turkish citizens of Iraqi origin, Iraqi-born citizens and Iraqi refugees.

Kampala Convention

The Kampala Convention is a treaty of the African Union (AU) that addresses internal displacement caused by armed conflict, natural disasters and large-scale development projects in Africa.

Sudanese refugees are persons originating from the country of Sudan, but seeking refuge outside the borders of their native country. In recent history, Sudan has been the stage for prolonged conflicts and civil wars, as well as environmental changes, namely desertification. These forces have resulted not only in violence and famine, but also the forced migration of large numbers of the Sudanese population, both inside and outside the country's borders. Given the expansive geographic territory of Sudan, and the regional and ethnic tensions and conflicts, much of the forced migration in Sudan has been internal. Yet, these populations are not immune to similar issues that typically accompany refugeedom, including economic hardship and providing themselves and their families with sustenance and basic needs. With the creation of a South Sudanese state, questions surrounding southern Sudanese IDPs may become questions of South Sudanese refugees.

Refugees of the Syrian Civil War are citizens and permanent residents of Syria, who have fled their country over the course of the Syrian Civil War. The pre-war population of the Syrian Arab Republic was estimated at 22 million (2017), including permanent residents. Of that number, the United Nations (UN) identified 13.5 million (2016) as displaced persons, requiring humanitarian assistance. Of these, since the start of the Syrian Civil War in 2011 more than six million (2016) were internally displaced, and around five million (2016) had crossed into other countries, with most seeking asylum or placed in Syrian refugee camps established in Turkey (3,614,108), Lebanon (929,624), Jordan (662,010), Egypt (131,433), and other countries.


International Organization for Migration (IOM) Mission in Ukraine is an official representative office of the International Organization for Migration in the country and is located in its capital city Kyiv.

Refugee crisis can refer to difficulties and dangerous situations in the reception of large groups of forcibly displaced persons. These could be either internally displaced, refugees, asylum seekers or any other huge groups of migrants.

Immigration detention of refugee and asylum seeking children in Thailand violates the rights of children under international law. The undocumented migrant children are detained for indefinite and prolonged periods without proper access to legal support. Thailand is key transit route, host and final destination for refugees seeking asylum in southeast Asia and Australia. During the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) session in May 2016, various human rights issues including detention of refugee and asylum seeking children were reported. Currently, there are no effective alternatives to immigration detention and all sectors of population including children are subject to detention.

Turkey's migrant crisis, was a period during the 2010s characterized by high numbers of people arriving in Turkey. Turkey became the top refugee receiving country in 2014, mid-2015 (1,838,848), and mid-2016 (2,869,421) reported on UNHCR registered refugees by country/territory of asylum [sort each year on descending]. Turkey's refugee breakdown in 2019 was "neighbor countries:" Syrians 3.6 M, Iraqis 142,000, Iranians 39,000, "Asia:" Afghans 172,000, "Africa:" 11,700. Reported by UNHCR in 2018, Turkey hosted 63.4% of all the "registered Syrian refugees." As of 26 June 2020, refugees of the Syrian Civil War in Turkey numbered 3,591,892.

References

Citations

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