Inflammation and stories on UNHCR

 Refugees in Iran
There are more refugees and displaced people now than ever before in history. An estimated 65.3 million people are displaced, with 21.3 million of those being refugees. Here are 10 facts about refugees in Iran.

  1. As of October 2016, the Islamic Republic of Iran was the fifth top refugee-hosting country in the world. A number of refugees in Iran comes in after Jordan, Turkey, Pakistan and Lebanon.
  2. Iran only has a small number of refugees that flee to find resettlement elsewhere. Iran has taken on a significant role in the refugee crisis, taking in around 979,400 refugees, most of which have fled from Afghanistan and Iraq.
  3. At the end of 2015, Iran constructed and renovated three schools for the benefit of refugee and host communities. In 2016, UNHCR supported Iran in building four more additional schools and providing literacy classes for approximately 3,000 refugees, both children and adults.
  4. The Supreme Leader of Iran declared, in 2015, that every child in Iran is required to attend school, no matter their documentation status. This allowed around 48,000 undocumented Afghans to enroll in the education system. Over 350,000 Afghan and Iraqi students enrolled for the 2015 – 2016 school year and that number is only expected to grow.
  5. UNHCR has worked together with Iran’s Ministry of Health to provide Primary Health Care (PHC) to all refugees. PHC includes vaccines, family planning, and cares specifically for mothers and children. There were 83,000 refugees enrolled in Iran’s national health insurance program in 2015.

  1. The Iranian government and UNHCR are working together to provide prevention and rehabilitation to those who have been victims of violence. Assistance is given to sexual and gender-based violence victims as well as those victim to substance abuse.
  2. Around 6,000 refugees were set to receive legal assistance from the Iranian government in 2016. UNHCR also invests in infrastructure in areas of Iran that have the largest refugee populations.
  3. Iran’s government has recently shifted its view on formal skills training for refugees. Skills learned in these training will assist in providing the refugees with self-reliance tools. This will not only be valuable for them during their time in Iran, but also if they choose to return to their home country. Around 3,500 refugees were to be enrolled in formal skills training in 2016.
  4. There were 157 health centers and 24 educational facilities planned to be constructed, rehabilitated, or adequately equipped in Iran in 2016.
  5. Iran and nine other developing countries host more of the world’s refugees than any of the world’s wealthiest nations. These 10 countries account for only 2.5 percent of the world’s economy. Amnesty International said that the wealthiest nations do the least in providing host communities and resources.

Over 20 million refugees, including refugees in Iran, are under the age of 18. Every day, nearly 34,000 people are forced to flee their home country worldwide. Some organizations that assist Iran and other developing countries in their support of refugees are UNHCR, Amnesty International, and World Relief – among many others.

Shannon Elder

Photo: Flickr

 Stateless People
Statelessness is a phenomenon that affects an estimated 10 million people globally. Those affected have been denied citizenship and are refused self-identification and other government documentation necessary for acquiring rights granted by the state.

Photojournalist Greg Constantine stumbled upon the issue of statelessness in 2002. In response, he created the project Nowhere People and for 10 years traveled to impoverished communities where statelessness is most common. Utilizing his photojournalism skills, Constantine has been able to put a face to the issue of statelessness and share the stories of those affected by it. His mission, he explains, “aims to show the human toll the denial of citizenship has claimed on people and ethnic groups” and to “provide tangible documentation of proof that millions of people hidden and forgotten all over the world actually exist.” The Nowhere People project has aroused awareness and drawn in advocacy from various organizations that share the same mission.

Of the many organizations fighting statelessness is the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). In 2014, the UNHCR launched the Campaign to End Statelessness – #IBelong – within 10 years. Through establishing coalitions with governments, organizations and stateless groups, the UNHCR has been able to erect a global alliance that offers supportive assistance for stateless people.

The UNHCR emphasizes that political support and involvement must occur in order for statelessness to end. Suggested political involvement of the states includes law and policy reform, the protection of children from statelessness, ending any discrimination that prohibits nationality, providing protection for migrants and appropriately providing identification documents.

Due to early efforts of the UNHCR, four million stateless people have been granted nationality since 2003. Following the launch of the Campaign to End Statelessness, the UNHCR has succeeded in expanding their budget and in 2015, held a budget of $68 million. Additionally, they have been able to send out specialists to foster relations and work collectively with other organizations and national governments.

Stateless people face insecurities every day surrounding their livelihood. Basic human rights are jeopardized, safety is uncertain, poverty is a reality and opportunity is hindered. Projects such as Nowhere People, along with the efforts of UNHCR and other allied organizations, not only offer hope that those experiencing statelessness will one day obtain nationality but also provides a nearer future for efficiently managing the progress of moving out of poverty.

Amy Williams

Photo: Flickr

Somali Refugees
According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Somalia “remains the epicenter of one of the world’s largest displacement crises.” Of the approximately 11 million people living in Somalia, well over one million are internally displaced while another one million Somalis are registered as refugees in the Horn of Africa and Yemen. Somali refugees have suffered the consequences of a “failed state,” enduring decades of political turmoil, severe drought and the presence of extremist groups.

Because Somalia is one of the countries specified in President Trump’s executive order regarding the immigration ban, it’s important to understand the implications of the country’s situation. Here are 10 facts about Somali refugees:

  1. Since 1991, when President Mohammed Siad Barre fled the country to make way for a power struggle between two warring clans, Somalia has lacked a stable government. Fighting among warlords and rebel groups has made it extremely difficult to restore peace in the country.
  2. It has been difficult to provide Somalia with the international aid that it needs. The country became so dangerous that the U.N. pulled its international aid workers from Somalia in 2001. In 2005, the U.N. World Food Program shipments to Somalia were stopped because they were being seized by rebel forces. Today, it is still difficult to ensure that aid shipments do not fall into the wrong hands.
  3. The total number of native-born Somalis living outside their country more than doubled between 1990 and 2015. The number increased from approximately 850,000 to two million.
  4. Today, there are close to 150,000 Somali immigrants and refugees living in the U.S., and under the Obama administration, nearly 43,000 Somali refugees came to the U.S.
  5. This decade, more than 260,000 people have died in Somalia as the result of severe drought, which has contributed to a lack of clean water and the disintegration of agriculture across the country. The U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs stated in a 2016 report that one in 12 Somalis struggles to meet their needs regarding food and water. The report also stated that approximately 305,000 children under the age of five were suffering from malnutrition.
  6. Somalia’s neighboring countries host the largest number of its refugees. According to data collected by the UNHCR, there are just under 330,000 Somali refugees registered in Kenya, 241,000 in Ethiopia and 255,000 in Yemen. Thousands more have found temporary living situations in Tanzania, Uganda, Djibouti and Eritrea.
  7. Dabaab, the largest refugee camp in the world, was home to more than half a million Somalis in 2015. The camp is located in northeastern Kenya and was initially set up as a temporary living situation for refugees fleeing conflict in Somalia and Sudan. Unfortunately for many, the camp has become more permanent. Refugees are often stuck in camps for several decades, unable to emigrate to another country or return to their own. Kenya now plans to close the camp as it has become a breeding ground for extremist groups.
  8. Islamist group Al-Shabaab has a strong presence in Somalia, initially gaining support by promising safety and security to citizens. Al-Shabaab’s credibility quickly declined due to violence and the denial of Western aid. Al-Shabaab’s presence in Somalia has contributed heavily to the refugee crisis, committing senseless acts of violence that contribute further to the chaos.
  9. According to the U.S. federal budget proposal for 2017, Somalia will receive $116.8 million in funding for security assistance and even less in humanitarian aid.
  10. Somali refugees around the world have been resettled and have succeeded in creating productive and successful lives in Western countries. Apart from the many Somalis living in the U.S., around 280,000 Somali immigrants live in European countries.

Somalia continues to be one of the most prominent sources of the world’s refugees, as it has been for several decades. The call for humanitarian assistance and the need for development in the country is at an all-time high, especially considering the possibility that, under the new administration, Somali refugees may not be allowed to enter the United States.

Peyton Jacobsen

Photo: Flickr

Bhutan Refugees
Situated between India and China, Bhutan is an isolated Buddhist kingdom that had generated one of the highest numbers of refugees in the world compared to its population. Since 1991, one sixth of Bhutan’s people have resettled in Nepal, India and other countries.

  1. Bhutan refugees are called Lhotshampas, or ‘southerners.’ Lhotshampa people are Bhutanese people of Nepalese ancestry. In the 1980s, Lhotshampas were seen as a threat to political order and were evicted from Bhutan in the 1990s to settle in Nepal.
  2. The government of Nepal and UNHCR has managed seven refugee camps since the 1990s. In 2008, the International Organization for Migration and UNHCR jointly started refugee resettlement programs throughout the world.
  3. In 2007, more then 100,000 refugees from Bhutan lived in the seven camps of the Jhapa and Morang districts in eastern Nepal. Now, just two camps remain and the refugee population is less than 18,000 people.
  4. A group of eight countries — Australia, Canada, Denmark, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Norway, the United Kingdom and the United States of America — came together in 2007 to create new life opportunities for Bhutan refugees.
  5. Bhutan refugees have to go through an interview and selection process. The first refugees settled included women at risk, survivors of violence and torture and refugees with medical needs such as speech and hearing impairments.
  6. Some Bhutan refugees requested that the Nepal government send them back home. These refugees are unwilling to settle in a third country; however, the Secretary of Beldangi Camp Sanchahang Limbu said that he fears there would be no one to care for the refugees once they returned home.
  7. As of November 2015, 5,554 Bhutan refugees were resettled in Australia, 6,500 in Canada, 874 in Denmark, 1,002 in New Zealand, 327 in the Netherlands, 566 in Norway, 358 in the United Kingdom and 84,819 in the U.S.

These migrating people hope for a final destination to their journey, and countries across the world strive to help them attain this goal.

Jacqueline Venuti

Photo: Flickr

Democratic Republic of the Congo Refugees
According to the BBC, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has suffered from political instability, insecurity and violence since its independence in 1960. As a result, the country hosts a considerable amount of Democratic Republic of the Congo refugees.

From 1997 to 2003, the country experienced a violent civil war. In addition, the Congolese army fought Rwandan forces and rebel groups near the Rwandan border. Multiple armed groups continue to fight among themselves and with the government for control of the resource-rich eastern provinces.

The extreme level of violence and human rights abuses in the eastern DRC have caused thousands to flee the area. Here are 10 facts about Democratic Republic of the Congo refugees:

  1. At the end of 2015, the UNHCR identified 495,724 DRC refugees. They live scattered among the Republic of the Congo, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Zambia and Malawi.
  2. Congolese refugees are predominantly from the provinces of North and South Kivu, Orientale and Katanga in northeastern DRC. Fighting between government and rebel forces has been prevalent in that region for decades.
  3. The Cultural Orientation Resource Centre’s (COR) data on the DRC places 73 percent of Congolese refugees under the age of 25. Many of these individuals are single parents or the head of their households.
  4. Living conditions for most DRC refugees in host countries are harsh, unhealthy and unsafe. Additionally, these conditions are likely to deteriorate further as more refugees flee the DRC. For example, the COR reports that Rwandan refugee camps are extremely overcrowded and lack recreational and employment opportunities. This results in “high rates of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV), prostitution, early pregnancy and school dropouts.”
  5. Many refugees suffer from a high degree of trauma from exposure to violence, torture and assault and require professional medical attention.
  6. Most of the refugees are from the historically persecuted Banyamulenge, Hutu and Tutsi ethnic groups.
  7. Congolese refugees face very limited employment opportunities in many host countries. This makes integration unlikely and increasing their dependence on foreign aid. According to the European Resettlement Network, Malawi, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia have imposed restrictions to prevent Congolese refugees from obtaining work.
  8. In Uganda, the country hosting the largest proportion of Congolese refugees, “the settlements resemble agricultural village life back in the DRC, with small plots available for farming.” Education and SGBV prevention and response services are also available. This will allow refugees to provide for themselves, even when there are scarce employment opportunities.
  9. Although repatriation remains unlikely, the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework in DRC and the Region (PSC) initiated a program for voluntary repatriation for Congolese refugees in 2014. If this program is successful it could mean the return of thousands of refugees to their homes.
  10. The European Resettlement Network claims “160,000 refugees have been identified for resettlement” in the U.S. and Europe. This massive resettlement plan will greatly reduce the operational strain on many overcrowded refugee camps.

In order to improve the living conditions of Democratic Republic of the Congo, refugees need additional aid in countries like Rwanda, Burundi and Uganda. Host countries must continue to provide (and improve) education and employment opportunities.

Furthermore, as in Uganda’s refugee settlements, Democratic Republic of the Congo refugees need the means and the training that will allow them to provide for themselves in times of employment scarcity. Consequently, this will reduce refugees’ dependence on foreign aid. It will also increase their ability to integrate and improve their standards of living.

Christina Egerstrom

Photo: Flickr

Refugees in Central African Republic

The recent internal conflict in Central African Republic has prompted many of its citizens to flee to neighboring nations or safer places within the country. After settling into host communities, UNHCR (the United Nations refugee agency) has been able to provide assistance to the refugees and help them acclimate to new areas.

Here are six facts that you should know about refugees in Central African Republic:

  1. Nearly 418,000 refugees in Central African Republic are internally displaced because of the current conflict in the country. However, even prior to these issues many neighboring cities and countries were already hosting refugees from the Central African Republic. The new influx of refugees has prompted new response plans to accommodate these people, such as the CAR Regional Refugee Response Plan.
  2. Including those who are internally displaced, there are approximately 2.7 million people who are in need of humanitarian assistance, as well as 2.4 million children who are affected by the crisis.
  3. Almost one million citizens have fled their homes to seek refuge in local mosques and churches, or as far as Cameroon, Chad and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. After these journeys, many arrive having endured brutal attacks from heavily armed fighters along way and are suffering from extreme malnutrition.
  4. The majority of these refugees are able to successfully settle into host villages or refugee camps. Here, UNHCR and partners provide basic social services and help the refugees to integrate into their new homes.
  5. UNHCR has received $24.7 million in aid to assist refugees in Central African Republic. However, this is only 11 percent of the original $225.5 million that the organization appealed for. Foreign aid continues to help refugees become comfortable in their new surroundings, providing for basic needs and protection while they acclimatize.
  6. However, the basic needs of the refugees in Central African Republic surpass the amount of aid that has been provided. More than 20 percent of the refugees arriving in camps are vulnerable with specific needs and health issues, such as malaria and malnutrition. While the UNHCR teams work to provide things such as emergency supplies and medical care, there is not enough funding to provide optimal assistance.

While UNHCR cannot provide the amount of assistance necessary, it has still been successful at helping refugees to acclimate to their host communities. As the internal conflict in Central African Republic continues, foreign aid will continue to assist those who turn to host communities for refuge.

Amanda Panella

Photo: Flickr

Refugee camps

Refugee camps are supposed to be temporary living settlements for displaced people fleeing violence and persecution from their home countries. While the accommodations within refugee camps are built on short-term solutions, the idea of “temporary” for refugees grows obsolete as their living situations become more permanent.

A refugee spends an average of 12 years living in a camp according to the New York Times. These camps face their own significant problems. In the last 10 years, the number of displaced people in the world tripled. Over 60 million people are now displaced, said the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). Refugee camps are constantly subjected to insufficient funding and support from the international community, overcrowding, scarcity of food, shortage of clean water and poor sanitation.

Without adequate food, refugees are susceptible to chronic malnutrition, which increases their risk of disease or illness. While the UNHCR recommends a daily minimum of 20 liters per person per day, many refugee camps fail to meet these standards. A lack of clean water and poor sanitation systems result in more diseases, such as diarrhea and cholera.

Proactive health measures, however, are being taken. To combat malnutrition and nutrient deficiencies, some refugee camps have implemented community gardens. At the Meheba refugee camp in Zambia, for example, refugees can grow their own food and add fruits and vegetables to their diets. Calls for improvements in both the latrine and sufficient waste disposal systems have also been made, as these will not only improve sanitation but also prevent disease.

The Kilis Refugee Camp in Turkey resembles more of a permanent shelter. There are no tents, but sturdy containers instead. The camp has amenities that many others lack; electricity, maintenance, a clinic and grocery stores. Within the grounds, there are also schools and counselors.

However nice the camp is, the prolonged stay of many of the refugees makes it more difficult to maintain psychological well-being. The placement of refugee camps away from society and the increasing length of stay by their residents make it hard for the people to remain engaged. Without employment and integration, refugees cannot practice their skill sets or feel connected to the local community.

UNHCR Engineer and Physical Planning & Shelter Officer Anicet Adjahossou found that one solution to strengthen community building within refugee camps was to work with anthropologists and refugees to redesign the standard refugee camp grid format into a new housing layout.

In 2012, Adjahoosu worked with UNHCR at the Dollo Ado refugee camp in Ethiopia to organize the homes into sets of U-shaped enclosures. The innovative arrangement prompts more family interaction and allows for larger communal areas. Also included were locations for schools, water distribution points, markets and health centers.

In addition to improving the living conditions in refugee camps, more aid must be given to prevent and end conflicts, so that we do not continue to see an increase in people forced to flee their homes in search of safety. Luckily, it appears that advocates like Anicet Adjehossou are taking the lead.

Erica Rawles

Photo: Flickr

Refugees from AfghanistanRefugees from Afghanistan have been fleeing to nearby countries since the Soviet War in Afghanistan in the 1980s. Many of these refugees have been unable to return to Afghanistan because of their vulnerability to the security issues that plague the area.

While many refugees from Afghanistan reside in Pakistan or Iran, the prospects for local integration are unfortunately low, as they have little to no access to legal status services. This is just one of many obstacles that refugees face, so here are 10 facts that illuminate the struggles of refugees from Afghanistan:

    1. Afghanistan, Somalia, and Syria contribute more than half of all refugees in the world.
    2. Aside from refugees displaced outside of Afghanistan, there are approximately one million people who are internally displaced as well.
    3. Iran and Pakistan are home to the largest Afghan refugee population, according to the UNHCR’s mandate. Iran hosts nearly 900,000 refugees, while Pakistan hosts over 1.5 million.
    4. The majority of these refugees from Afghanistan live on the average wage of less than $2 per day, which can buy little more than ten pieces of bread.
    5. The UNHCR distributes food to many refugees outside of Kabul, while the World Food Programme sends electronic food vouchers to approximately 4,500 displaced families inside Kabul.

  1. There are over 3.5 million people living in camps just outside of Kabul, which consist of little more than mud huts and run-down tents.
  2. Many NGOs have built schools and clinics in these camps to assist the refugees when their government does not.
  3. Between 2002 and 2012, UNHCR created the largest voluntary repatriation program that helped 3.8 million refugees from Afghanistan return back to their home out of Pakistan.
  4. Since 2002, over 5.7 million refugees have been able to return to Afghanistan.
  5. When some refugees cannot return, the Refugee Contact Croup on Iran has worked with the Iranian government to help refugees become resettled in their new homes.

There are many misconceptions surrounding refugees from Afghanistan. Refugees encounter many struggles while fleeing from insecure areas. However, the assistance of NGOs and local communities can ease their worries and help them to acclimate to their new lives or return to their home countries.

Amanda Panella

Photo: Flickr

Humanitarian_Innovation
Over the past few years, the UNHCR has experimented with the use of green energy technology in developing countries as a way to create sustainable light, heating and jobs for the poor.

In 2013, the organization funded a solar-light and fuel-efficient stoves project called Light Years Ahead for Sudanese refugees in eastern Chad.

Sudanese refugees and Chadian locals were taught how to construct fuel-efficient stoves and then employed to make them for the community. The stoves do not use firewood, preventing deforestation.

The project successfully used green technology to create a functioning economy for impoverished refugees and locals.

This method of humanitarian aid utilizes skills from locals and refugees to create a functioning local economy.

Last year the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs published a paper titled “Humanitarian Innovation” emphasizing the importance of capitalizing on the innovation of impoverished people.

The paper identifies previous approaches to humanitarian aid stressing that historically the UN and other aid organizations use a “top-down” structure.

This structure tends to work in the short-term by depending solely on aid from external actors rather than empowering those in need.

Instead, humanitarian innovation uses a “bottom-up” approach by “recognizing and understanding innovation capacity within communities”, and “putting these communities and local systems at the heart of the innovation process, regardless of where ideas or resources originate.”

This “bottom-up” method has been proven successful, mainly by its high investment value. In 2014, the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) and the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) announced a $41 million dollar investment in developing countries’ renewable energy projects.

The investments are meant to stimulate local economies by creating markets. The 2015 and 2016 loan qualification criteria for projects in countries is its ability to assist communities by creating jobs, generating income, helping public education and health, improving energy access, innovation, replicability and aligning with government priorities.

Sierra Leone, Samoa, Mali, the Republic of Ecuador, and the Maldives are some of the countries receiving loan investments.

More and more foreign investors are looking at funding renewable energy projects as a financially wise decision. Portfolio diversification allows investors to spread the risk of a project investment failing among less risking investments.

In other words, if a few projects succeed, a few failed projects can still be financially supported. This approach allows investors to safely invest in green energy projects in developing countries without severe risk.

Agricultural project investments, especially, show the potential to revert climate change, supply food for poor communities, and create jobs for locals, creates food security by using farming systems that are more resilient to climate change.

In addition, these investments reduce emissions and increase “agriculture’s potential to capture and sequester atmospheric carbon” which is harmful to the earth’s atmosphere. This agricultural system depends on daily maintenance from locals. Some locals are trained how to farm by green technology programs.

In 2012, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) which is part of the UN, and the European Commission invested €5.3 in Malawi, Vietnam and Zambia agricultural sectors to help with the transition into climate-smart agriculture.

Leslie Lipper, Senior Environmental Economist at FAO, says that, “Climate change offers the possibility for large-scale financing that’s directly linked to the agricultural sector to recognize the possibility for this environmental benefit, as well as the traditional agricultural products and markets.”

Michael Hopek

Sources: UNHCR, RSC 1, IRENA 1, IRENA 2, FAO, RSC 2, UN
Photo: bloglet

Greek Islands Becoming Overwhelmed by Refugees

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) estimated in a recent warning that nearly 1,000 refugees are arriving on Greek islands each day after crossing the Mediterranean Sea.

The organization has raised concerns that the growing number of migrants due to persistent conflicts in Africa and the Middle East are placing an unprecedented strain on Greece and other European nations.

William Spindler, spokesperson for the Office of the UNHCR, stated in a press briefing last week that “Greece’s volatile economic situation, combined with the increasing numbers of new arrivals, is putting severe strain on small island communities, which lack the basic infrastructure and services to adequately respond to the growing humanitarian needs.”

Officials estimate that at least 75,000 people have arrived on the shores of Greece since the beginning of 2015, with nearly 60 percent of these migrants arriving from Syria. Many other migrants have traveled from other regions afflicted with conflict including Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Nigeria and Somalia.

Thanassis Andreotis, president of a small coastal village in Lesvos, states in an interview about the surge in refugees, “Our Island can’t handle that many people coming over. There’s no way to take care of them.” Andreotis noted that due to a lack of governmental assistance, many members of his community have resorted to personally financing the construction of shelters for the migrants.

The UNHCR has stated that level of migrants arriving daily has reached such heights that border authorities and local communities are not capable of handling the “staggering” number of refugees. The majority of the migrants who have arrived in Greece plan to continue traveling north to other Western and Northern European countries via the Balkans region.

The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Serbia has reported an unprecedented surge in refugees, with at least 45,000 people seeking asylum within the region during the first half of 2015.

Spindler also emphasized while in Geneva that, “an urgent response from Europe is needed before the situation deteriorates further. Tightening borders is not the solution, including the plans of the Hungarian government to build a fence along the Serbian border.”

A human trafficking vessel that departed Turkey filled with refugees from the Middle East reportedly capsized last week in the Mediterranean Sea, killing at least 19 of the some 40 passengers on board. While this was the first major maritime disaster in this region in nearly a month, largely due to increased search-and-rescue-operations conducted by European nations, officials are concerned that the rising number of migrants will result in more deaths on the high seas.

Laura Padoan, a spokeswoman for the UNHCR, stated in response to the disaster and the increase of refugee journeys across the Mediterranean, “It’s just a short distance between Greece and Turkey but it is still very dangerous. What we need are safe legal routes to Europe, so that people don’t die in the process of getting here. Greece is facing a financial crisis and there is now a growing humanitarian crisis – and it can’t be left to Greece to deal with on its own. There needs to be a Europe-wide response.”

James Thornton

Sources: UN 1, UN 2, The Guardian
Photo: UN