IN FOCUS / 2015-06-23
UNHCR: 60 million people forcibly displaced
At the end of 2014, 59.5 million people all over the world were forcibly displaced, including 38.2 million internally displaced people, 19.5 million refugees and 1.8 million asylum seekers. According to the UNHCR annual report Global Trends 2014, this was the highest number ever recorded. Compared with a year earlier, the number of such people (internally displaced people, refugees, asylum seekers) was up 16%.
Looking only at the number of refugees, the increase was even larger (17%). One of the main reasons is the war in Syria. Many refugees seek shelter in neighbouring countries such as Turkey. In 2014, Turkey was the country with most refugees worldwide (1.6 million), followed by Pakistan (1.5 million) and Lebanon (1.2 million).
According to the UNHCR, roughly 217,000 refugees found shelter in Germany, 15% more than a year earlier. The number of asylum applications rose markedly, too. In 2013, roughly 110,000 first-time applications were filed, while in 2014 new applications totalled 173,000 (+57%). Russia was the only country in the world recording even more asylum applications (275,000) - the main reason probably being the Ukraine conflict.