(CNN Spanish) — The image of a family, or what remains of it, crossing on foot a border sometimes covered by snow and guarded by much better dressed soldiers, at other times crushed by heat and humidity and threatened by human traffickers, is has become all too common so far in the 21st century.
From the Congo to Syria, and from Afghanistan to Venezuela, the number of displaced people and refugees has not stopped growing in the world. In 2016, when the total number of displaced reached 65 million people, the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) already warned that the crisis was worse than at the end of World War II.
that figure It includes 48 million people displaced within the borders of a country, 26.6 million refugees and 4.4 million asylum seekers.
In this new edition of World Refugee Day, this is a look at their situation in the world and the countries that receive the most refugees.
Where do most refugees come from?
68% of the world’s refugees come from just five countries according to UNHCR data. These are Syria (6.8 million), Venezuela (4.1 million), Afghanistan (2.6 million), South Sudan (2.2 million) and Myanmar (1.1 million).
Syria has been in civil war for 11 years now, and Afghanistan has just emerged from a 20-year war between the United States and the Taliban. While South Sudan also lived in civil war from 2013 to 2020, after its independence.
Meanwhile, Venezuela has been experiencing an exodus of its population for years, trying to escape the social, political and economic crisis in the country, while Myanmar has been affected by violence against the Rohingya minority and the recent coup.
Behind, contingents are also important of refugees from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (0.84 million), Somalia (0.81 million), Sudan (0.78 million), Central African Republic (0.64 million) and Eritrea (0.52 million).
These countries have been affected by civil wars or political violence in recent years, to which is added extreme poverty.
Where are the refugees going?
Turkey is the country with the most refugees has received (3.7 million)mostly from Syria, a country with which it shares borders.
Behind are Colombia (1.7 million), Uganda (1.5 million), Pakistan (1.4 million) and Germany (1.2 million).
These five countries concentrate 39% of the total number of refugees according to UNHCR.
Like Turkey, Colombia, Uganda and Pakistan have received refugees coming mainly from its neighbors Venezuela, Congo and Afghanistan (respectively). Germany, on the other hand, has welcomed people from different backgrounds, especially after temporarily opening the doors to refugees in 2015.
Other important countries at the time of host refugees they are Sudan (1 million), Lebanon (900,000), Bangladesh (900,000), Peru (500,000), and the United States (300,000).
Altogether, the 85% of the world’s refugees were hosted by developing countries, and the 73% by neighbors. Furthermore, it is estimated that there close to a million of children born in other countries and in refugee families.
What exactly are refugees?
There is much talk of refugees, displaced persons, asylum seekers and even migrants, as if it were the same condition. But it’s not like that.
The Convention relating to the Status of Refugees (adopted by the United Nations in 1951 and expanded in scope in 1967), I know consider refugee to any person who “due to well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of his or her nationality and is unable or, because of such fear, is unable to wishes to avail himself of the protection of such a country; or who, not having a nationality and being, as a result of such events, outside the country of his former habitual residence, is unable or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to return to it “.
War criminals and those who have committed serious common crimes are out of reach of the Convention.