Record 65.6 Million People Displaced Worldwide, Says UN

"Not only for the refugees and displaced from South Sudan, but for the almost 66 million displaced around the world".

The UNHCR's new Global Trends report on displacement said at the end of last year 300,000 more people than the preceding year had been displaced.

"It speaks louder than ever to the need for solidarity and common goal in preventing and resolving crises, and ensuring together that the world's refugees, internally displaced and asylum seekers are properly protected and cared for while solutions are pursued", he said.

The UNHCR said 40.3 million people of the 65.6 million people displaced in 2016 were uprooted within the borders of their own countries, identified as internally displaced persons, or IDPs.

Asylum seekers totalled 2.8 million by the end of a year ago, the United Nations report found.

South Sudan, the world´s fastest growing refugee crisis, has by now forced 1.9 million people to flee across the border.

Unaccompanied or separated children - mainly Afghans and Syrians - lodged some 75,000 applications in 70 countries in 2016.

UNHCR national director Naomi Steer said the donations would help UNHRC to continue to provide timely and targeted life-saving support to refugees.

Monday's report also pointed out that, despite huge focus on Europe's migrant crisis, it is poorer countries that host most of the world's refugees.

Turkey was the country hosting the largest number of refugees in the world, with 3.1 million, followed by Jordan, Palestine, Lebanon and Pakistan.

"Although these figures represent small shifts compared to the previous year. the relatively stable figures mask a very unstable situation", agency chief Filippo Grandi said ahead of the official release of the report Monday.

Iraq has the fourth-highest displaced population with 4.2 million, followed by South Sudan with 3.3 million.

That number marks a jump of just 300,000 from the end of 2015, but is more than six million higher than at the end of 2014, according to a report published by the United Nations refugee agency.

UNHCR also sounded an alarm over another rapidly escalating crisis in Democratic Republic of Congo, where over 1 million people have been displaced internally and over 30,000 terms have crossed into Angola since August.

Turkey hosts the most refugees at 2.9 million.

"The system protecting refugees will collapse if we do not step up our support to countries like Uganda", said Jan Egeland, Secretary General of the Norwegian Refugee Council in a statement. The UNHCR report added that even this number probably "underestimated the true figure".

The newly-formed WRC convened for the first time in Geneva, Switzerland this week to consider the solutions to the global refugee crisis.

Grandi plans to make a strong appeal for an increase in peace efforts at the Solidarity Summit on Refugees in Uganda this week.

"We are in an extremely hard situation and ultimately the solution has to come from worldwide states upholding their obligations and supporting refugees, but also helping to bring crises to a close", said Matthew Saltmarsh, spokesman for the UNHCR.

  • Zachary Reyes