The welcoming of a foreigner who is persecuted and in search of security is a humanitarian act of millennial solidarity.

Crianças refugiadas no mundo | IKMR

Refuge means withdrawing to a safe place, seeking refuge, sheltering, seeking support, protection. The welcoming of a foreigner who is persecuted and in search of security is a humanitarian act of millennial solidarity that goes back to the flourishing of the old great empires of the Middle East, with references to this practice in texts written more than 3,500 years ago.

However, it was only in the 20th century that the refuge was consolidated as an institution through international law, such as the reception and protection by a nation state to any and all individuals who were forced to leave their country of nationality due to founded fear of persecution related to race, religion, nationality, social group, political opinion, armed conflict, widespread violence or massive violation of human rights.

According to UNHCR data, at the end of 2015, there were 65.3 million people forcibly displaced worldwide, of whom 21.3 million were refugees (16.1 million under UNHCR’s mandate and 5.2 million refugees Palestinians registered with UNRWA), 3.2 million asylum seekers and 40.8 million internally displaced persons. During 2015, an average of 24 people a minute were forced to leave their homes and seek refuge elsewhere. Under UNHCR’s mandate, there were more than 43 million people, the second largest number registered by the agency since 1993. Of the total, 47% were women and 53% were men. Under 18 years old made up 51% of the refugee population. Of the requests for refuge, Of the refugee requests, 98,400 were carried out by unaccompanied children, the largest since that date began to be collected in 2006. The main countries of origin of these children are Afghanistan, Eritrea, Syria and Somalia, and the destination are 78 countries.

More than half of the refugees around the world come from three countries: Syria, Afghanistan and Somalia. The main host countries are Turkey, Pakistan, Lebanon, Iran, Ethiopia and Jordan.



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