First Global Refugee Forum opens in Geneva

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UN officials hope the forum will fundamentally change the attitude towards refugees and the communities that host them

More than 2,000 government, UN and business, civil society and humanitarian workers gather in Geneva to take part in the first ever Global Forum on Refugees.

The three-day event, which kicks off on Monday, aims to develop new approaches and build a long-term commitment to helping refugees and their host communities.

The organizers of the forum are preparing to receive heads of state from Germany, Turkey, Pakistan, Costa Rica, Somalia, Turkey, Ethiopia, as well as other prominent figures.

There’s a lot at stake. More than 70 million people around the world have been displaced from their homes by war, conflict and persecution. More than 25 million of them are refugees who have crossed international borders and cannot return home..

According to the UN Refugee Agency, more than two thirds of all refugees worldwide come from just five countries: Syria (6.7 million), Afghanistan (2.7 million), South Sudan (2.3 million), Myanmar (1.1 million) and Somalia (0.9 million) ). According to the latest data of the agency, the largest number of refugees (3.7 million people), mainly from Syria, was hosted by Turkey..

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) hopes the Geneva forum will revolutionize the way refugees and the communities that host them.

UNHCR spokesman Babar Baloch told Voice of America that the fragmented global approach to refugees and displaced persons must change.

“It will bring everyone together in one place, at one table. But it’s also an attempt to get ahead.First Global Refugee Forum opens in Geneva This is a clear call for shared responsibility, ”he said..

According to Baloch, everyone at all levels of government, development, financial, civil and other sectors should take responsibility and take part in caring for refugees..

“We are talking about changing the policy towards refugees. Sharing responsibilities with countries hosting the largest number of refugees, for example, obligations to provide additional places for resettlement. It is also about changing policies regarding refugees’ access to education, health services, and other sectors where they can benefit like other people, ”he added..

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