Global Trends At-a-Glance

In the first months of 2022, more than 100 million individuals were displaced worldwide as a result of persecution, conflict, violence or human rights violations. This accounts for an increase of 10.7 million people displaced from the end of the previous year. In a matter of a few months, the world’s forcibly displaced population reached the highest ever on record. This includes:

  • 26.6 million refugees in the world—the highest ever seen;
  • 50.9 million internally displaced people; and
  • 4.4 million asylum-seekers.
  • 4.1 million Venezuelans displaced abroad

Although the COVID-19 pandemic slowed the rate of new displacement in 2021, new asylum claims still remain high. In the first half of 2021, asylum-seekers submitted 300,000 new claims.

100

Million

More than the entire population of Germany.

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Noteworthy Facts and Statistics by Region/Country

 

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • The East and Horn of Africa, and Great Lakes region hosted nearly 5 million refugees at the end of 2021. 
  • The region hosts 67 per cent of the refugees on the African continent and
    20 per cent of the global refugee population.
  • Conflict in the Tigray region in Ethiopia led to the internal displacement of more than 3 million Ethiopians by the end of 2021.

Central America and Venezuela

  • In recent years, El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras have experienced a dramatic escalation in violence by organized criminal groups, locally called maras.
  • The number of refugees and Venezuelans displaced abroad grew in 2021, reaching over 4 million by the end of the year. 
  • Colombia hosted more than 1.7 million people displaced across borders. 
  • 890,000 people originating from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras remain forcibly displaced

Europe

  • Turkey continues to be the world's largest refugee-hosting country, home to 3.7 million refugees. 
  • In 2021, more than 114,000 people risked their lives trying to reach Europe by sea; over 3,200 of them are dead or missing.
  • Europe granted international protection to more than a quarter of a million people within the region. 

Iraq 

  • Nearly 1.2 million Iraqis continued to be internally displaced in 2021, and the country hosts over 250,000 refugees from other countries.
  • Although Iraqi IDP returnees consistently outnumber those who are internally displaced, many struggle to reintegrate and still require humanitarian assistance.

South Sudan

  • By the end of 2021, there were more than 2.1 million South Sudanese refugees. 
  • 95% of South Sudanese refugees are hosted in Uganda, Sudan, Ethiopia and Kenya. 
  • 45,900 South Sudanese refugees returned to their country by mid-year 2021. 

Syria 

  • Conflict in Syria reached its 11th year in 2021, over a decade. 
  • There are 13.5 million displaced Syrian, representing more than half of Syria's total population. 
  • 6.8 million Syrian refugees are hosted in 128 countries. 
  • 80% of all Syrian refugees are located in neighboring countries, with Turkey hosting more than half (3.6 million). 

Rohingya Refugee Emergency

  • The Rohingya are a stateless Muslim minority in Myanmar. The vast majority of Rohingya refugees are women and children, including newborn babies. Many others are elderly people requiring additional aid and protection.
  • 1.1 million stateless Rohingya refugees have fled Myanmar since the start of violence in 2017. 
  • 90% of Rohingya refugees live in Bangladesh and Malaysia. 

Ukraine

  • In 2020, the number of Ukrainian refugees decreased to 18,400, bringing it below the statistical definition threshold of a protracted refugee situation. 
  • UNHCR supported the development of a national framework in Ukraine for the protection of IDPs. 
  • Women make up 56% of internally displaced people in Ukraine. 

Yemen

  • Fighting in Yemen, already one of the poorest countries in the Middle East, has severely compounded needs arising from long years of poverty and insecurity.
  • In 2021, the internally displaced population in Yemen reached 4 million people, with displaced families facing an acute risk of famine. 
  • Natural disasters have exacerbated conflict in Yemen, forcing Yemenis to flee multiple times. 

2/3

of people displaced across borders come from just five countries: Syria, Venezuela, Afghanistan, South Sudan and Myanmar.

Education

General Trends for 2021:

  • At all levels, refugee enrollment is lower than that of non-refugees. As refugee children get older, they are at greater risk of being left behind.
  • Close to half of all refugee children – 48 percent – remain out of school.
  • Refugee learners lost an average of 142 days of school up to March 2021 because of school closures. 
  • Even before COVID-19, young refugees were around 30 percent less likely to complete primary school, and half as likely to complete lower-secondary school. 

Primary, Secondary and Higher Education:

  • Date collected from 32 countries shows that pre-primary enrollment rates for refugees is 34 percent.
  • At primary level, UNHCR data suggests that 68 percent of refugee children are enrolled in
    school.
  • By contrast, only 34 percent of refugee children are enrolled in secondary school.
  • The enrollment level for higher education in college or university is 5 percent, up from 3 percent in 2020. 

Gender Gap:

  • At primary level, global gross enrollment rates for refugees were at 70 and 67 per cent for boys and girls respectively;
  • at secondary level, the rates were 35 and 31 per cent.

1.5 Billion

The COVID-19 pandemic affected 1.5 billion students around the world.

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