07.09.19 Forced Displacement at Record 68.5 million Refugees.
UNHCR’s annual Global Trends report shows an average of one person was displaced every two seconds in 2017, with developing countries most affected. Wars, violence and persecution uprooted record numbers of men, women and children worldwide last year, making a new global deal on refugees more critical than ever, according to a UNHCR report published today. The UN Refugee Agency’s annual Global Trends study found 68.5 million people had been driven from their homes across the world at the end of 2017, more people than the population of Thailand. Leading the displacement during the year was the crisis in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the war in South Sudan and the flight into Bangladesh from Myanmar of hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees. As with the number of countries producing large-scale displacement, the number of countries hosting large numbers was also comparatively few. Turkey remained the world’s leading refugee hosting country in terms of absolute numbers, with a population of 3.5 million refugees, mainly Syrians. Lebanon hosted the largest number of refugees relative to its national population. In all, 63 per cent of all refugees under UNHCR’s responsibility were in just 10 countries. Sadly, solutions remained in short supply. Wars and conflict continued to be the major drivers, with little visible progress towards peace. About 5 million people were able to return to their homes in 2017, with most returning from internal displacement. Among these were people returning under duress, or to fragile contexts. Credit: WORLD ECONOMIC FORUM
One of the most humiliating realities for Middle Eastern refugees involves a basic human need: going to the bathroom. At camps like Zaatari in Jordan, people walk miles and wait in endless lines to use unsanitary facilities, raising the possibility of disease. The indignity is particularly crushing for girls and young women, who risk being attacked using communal toilets late at night. Others simply try not to go, and risk contracting urinary tract infections. In response, some refugees have resorted to simply digging pits in the ground and trying to drain the sewage through trenches. It’s a grave sanitary hazard that affects more than 2 billion people worldwide.
Poverty deprives people of adequate education, health care and of life's most basic necessities- safe living conditions (including clean air and clean drinking water) and an adequate food supply. The developed (industrialized) countries today account for roughly 20 percent of the world's population but control about 80 percent of the world's wealth.
Poverty and pollution seem to operate in a vicious cycle that, so far, has been hard to break. Even in the developed nations, the gap between the rich and the poor is evident in their respective social and environmental conditions.