Number of Syrian Refugees Surpasses Four Million – UNWorld | July 9, 2015, Thursday // 15:06| views
UN High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres addresses the media during an informal meeting of EU Justice and Home Affairs ministers in Luxembourg on Thursday, July 9, 2015. EU ministers meet today and Friday to discuss the immigration policy. (AP P
The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) announced that the number of Syrians fleeing war and persecution has now surpassed four million.
This has made the Syrian conflict the worst crisis for almost a quarter of a century, while Syrian refugees represent the biggest refugee population from a single conflict in a generation.
According to the latest figures of UNHCR, which were released on Thursday, the total number of refugees from Syria stood at 4 013 000 people.
UNHCR Antonio Guterres said that this population deserved the support of the world, but was instead living in dire conditions and was sinking deeper into poverty.
Guterres clarified that the latest figures were based on new arrivals in Turkey and updated data from Turkish authorities on refugees already in the country.
In addition, to the refugees in neighbouring countries, another 7.6 million people were displaced inside Syria, who were living in difficult circumstances and in places with limited accessibility.
The worsening conditions are forcing the refugees towards Europe and further afield, but the overwhelming majority remains in the region.
The exodus from Syria is the highest recorded since 1992 when the number of refugees from Afghanistan reached 4.6 million.
Their number is even higher as it does not include more than 270 000 asylum applications submitted by Syrians in Europe and thousands of others not resettled in regional neighbours.
With the end of the Syrian conflict not in sight, the UNHCR estimates that at current rates the number of refugees will reach 4.27 million by the end of the year.
Turkey hosts 45 % of all Syrian refugees in the region - 1 805 255 people, while their number in other neighbouring countries is as follows: 249 726 in Iraq, 629 128 in Jordan, 132 375 in Egypt, 1 172 753 in Lebanon, and 24 055 elsewhere in North Africa.
Meanwhile, the funding of Syrian refugees has become increasingly difficult with UNHCR and partners having appealed for USD 5.5 B for 2015, but as of late June only around a quarter of the requested humanitarian aid has been provided.