They include those fleeing marauders in South Sudan, drug gangs in Central America, and the Islamic State in the Iraqi cities of Mosul and Falluja. While most are displaced within their own countries, an unprecedented number are seeking political asylum in the world’s rich countries. Nearly 100,000 are children who have attempted the journey alone.
All told, the number of people displaced by conflict is estimated to exceed 65 million, more than the population of Britain.
The new figures, part of the United Nations refugee agency’s Global Trends Report, come as hostility is surging toward migrants and refugees in the Western countries where they are seeking sanctuary and relief.
The European Union has shown signs of fracturing over how to handle the influx of people crossing the Mediterranean Sea.
The United Nations high commissioner for refugees, Filippo Grandi, expressed alarm on Sunday about what he described as a “climate of xenophobia that is very worrying in today’s Europe.” [Continue reading…]