According to a new report released by the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) on Friday, Turkey is still the world’s largest refugee host country, hosting nearly 3.7 million refugees, accounting for 15% of all cross-border displaced persons worldwide.
UNHCR’s annual global trends report found that Germany is the EU’s largest host country with 1.2 million refugees. Overall, the number of refugees in Europe has increased by 3%, and Europe has provided international protection for 284,900 people. Germany and Spain are responsible for hosting 83,700 and 46,500 refugees respectively, accounting for almost half of the total number of refugees in Europe.
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Philip Grandi said: “The solution requires global leaders and influential people to put aside differences, end selfish political practices, and instead focus on preventing and resolving conflicts and ensuring respect for human rights.”
The agency stated that among the refugees in Europe, an estimated 38% are under the age of 18.
After the Syrian civil war, Turkey has hosted the most refugees since 2014. The EU reached a 6 billion euro cash agreement with Ankara in 2016 to ease pressure on Greece and other frontline European countries.
Despite the pandemic, the number of people fleeing war, violence, persecution and human rights violations increased to nearly 82.4 million in 2020.
The control of immigration and asylum applications is still widespread among EU governments. In May, Denmark passed an unprecedented law allowing the government to send asylum seekers to a third country to process their applications, even though the EU prohibits the “externalization” of asylum rights.
The Danish law condemned by the European Union and UNHCR is likely to make Rwanda, the East African country, responsible for processing asylum applications.
At the same time, Hungary has pledged to veto a new treaty between the European Union and the African, Caribbean and Pacific communities, arguing that the treaty does not include sufficient safeguards to control the flow of migrants.
At the same time, the EU’s interior ministers are still at a deadlock over their plans to reform EU immigration and asylum rules. The key proposal in the New Immigration and Asylum Agreement proposed by the European Commission last September will require member states to either accept asylum seekers, or be responsible for repatriating those who have been denied asylum, or provide field financial assistance to the front. European Union countries.
The agreement also seeks to strengthen the role of Frontex, the EU agency responsible for external borders. Since the beginning of this year, more than 500 people have died as a result of trying to cross the Mediterranean.
The EU heads of state will discuss immigration policy at the next European Council meeting in Brussels from June 24 to 25.
[Edited by Josie Le Blond]