Istanbul has more Syrian refugees than all of Europe says David Miliband

The Associated Press reports: Nearly 60% of refugees are living in cities today and there are currently more Syrian refugees in Istanbul than in all the rest of Europe, the head of the International Rescue Committee has said.

David Miliband told The Associated Press in an interview Monday that “the iconic image” of a refugee being someone in a camp has changed.

He said so many people are fleeing conflict and chaos that there’s no room for them in camps. Equally important, he said, is that most people don’t want to be in refugee camps and when they’re displaced for a long time, they want to earn a living — even if that means working in the black market.

Miliband gave the example of Istanbul, without citing any figures. The International Rescue Committee said there are currently more Syrian refugees in Istanbul – some 366,000 – than the rest of Europe put together.

Currently, there are 20 million refugees in the world, including 2 million in Turkey, and 40 million people uprooted and displaced in their own countries, which Miliband called “a grisly world record.” [Continue reading…]

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