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South Sudan Still Africa’s Biggest Refugee Crisis – UNHCR

South Sudan remains Africa’s biggest refugee crisis, ranking second in the world after Syria, the United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR) says.

The agency released estimates on Monday indicating that there are currently more than 1.44 million refugees hosted by over 60 countries worldwide.

South Sudan accounts for 14 percent of the total number of displaced persons, second only to Syria which accounts for 40 percent. The Democratic Republic of Congo is third on the list with 11 percent.

The figures were released by UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi while opening the two-day Annual Tripartite Consultations on Resettlement (ATCR) in Geneva on Monday.

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A UN Projected Global Resettlement Needs 2020 report highlights that the East and Horn of Africa region accounts for the highest resettlement needs (almost 450,000), followed by Turkey (420,000), which is host to 3.7 million refugees, the wider Middle East and North Africa region (250,000) and the Central Africa and the Great Lakes region (almost 165,000).

Grandi appealed to the international community to provide refuge for the displaced persons, most of whom have fled their countries due to unending violence.

“Given the record numbers of people needing safety from war, conflict and persecution and the lack of political solutions to these situations, we urgently need countries to come forward and resettle more refugees,” Grandi said.

South Sudan continues to struggle with a refugee crisis caused by the more than five years of conflict that it has experienced.

In that period, the war has killed tens of thousands, leaving millions of families affected.

According to the UNHCR, over 2.3 million remain displaced in the country which gained independence from Sudan in 2011.

In his address on Monday, Grandi expressed confidence that the world can come together to eradicate the suffering the refugees undergo so they can live a normal life.

History has shown that with a strong sense of purpose, States can come together to collectively respond to refugee crises, and help millions to reach safety, find homes and build futures in new communities,” he said.

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Written by PH

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