2015 to Break Records for Forced Displacement
To mark this year’s International Migrants Day on December 18, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) is calling on the international community to come together and remember the refugees and migrants who have tragically lost their lives this year.
Inviting the international community to hold the first global Candlelight Vigil to commemorate the lives that have been lost or have disappeared while trying to reach safe harbour after arduous journeys across seas and deserts this year, the Vigil is a renewed opportunity to increase awareness on drivers of migration, and most importantly shift the narrative of migration towards a positive recognition of the many ways migrants contribute to host societies.In commemoration of the thousands of lives lost this year and each year during migration.
The candlelight should become the symbol of our solidarity with migrants and their families and remind us that for many, migration is often the only sliver of light left for millions of people around the world.
With almost a million people having crossed the Mediterranean as refugees and migrants so far this year, and conflicts in Syria and elsewhere continuing to generate staggering levels of human suffering, 2015 is likely to exceed all previous records for global forced displacement, the UN Refugee Agency warned in a new report today.
UNHCR’s Mid-Year Trends 2015 report, covering the period from January to end June, and looking at worldwide displacement resulting from conflict and persecution, shows markers firmly in the red in each of the three major categories of displacement – Refugees, asylum-seekers, and people forced to flee inside their own countries.
The global refugee total, which a year ago was 19.5 million, had as of mid-2015 passed the 20 million threshold (20.2 million) for the first time since 1992. Asylum applications meanwhile were up 78 per cent (993,600) over the same period in 2014. And the numbers of internally displaced people jumped by around 2 million to an estimated 34 million.
Indications from the first half of the year suggest 2015 is on track to see worldwide forced displacement exceeding 60 million for the first time. In a global context, that means that one person in every 122 has been forced to flee their home.
“Forced displacement is now profoundly affecting our times. It touches the lives of millions of our fellow human beings – both those forced to flee and those who provide them with shelter and protection,” High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres said.
“Never has there been a greater need for tolerance, compassion and solidarity with people who have lost everything,” he added.
"Il devient absolument urgent de mettre un terme à cette injustice. Il y a un manque de connaissances et de recherches. Il faut donc promouvoir le recueil de témoignages, mais aussi construire des mémoriaux, organiser des expositions..." - @BenjaminAbtan