Today, it is clear that the international system is not working. Millions of > people and their right to a better future are ignored, they are harassed, > insulted and demonized, as if being displaced due to wars, persecution and > conflicts are not enough
> The U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) released an annual report > last week revealing that the year 2014 broke a record for the number of > forcibly displaced persons around the world, with an all-time high of nearly > 60 million either externally or internally displaced people due to conflict, > violence and human rights violations. According to the report, one in every > 122 people is either a refugee, internally displaced or seeking asylum and > 42,500 people were displaced every day in 2014 on average. Over half of the > displaced people are children, and the overall numbers are increasing > rapidly. Syria is the largest source of refugees, although far from the only > one. One out of every four refugees comes from Syria, with 7.6 million > Syrians displaced within their country and 3.88 million having fled Syria. >
> Turkey has become a shelter to the world’s single largest refugee population > of 1.59 million last year, with the crisis in Syria continuing. Visiting the > refugee camps in Midyat in the province of Mardin with U.N. goodwill > ambassador Angelina Jolie, UNHCR Antonio Guterres said on Saturday: “Turkey > is today the largest refugee hosting country in the world and has a very > generous policy by opening borders and providing assistance and protection.” > As you know, Turkey has been harshly criticized for its open-door policy by > countries in the West and has assisted refugees seeking shelter in Turkey > with very little international support. Government figures show that the > country has spent more than $6 billion so far on refugees, while the > international community’s help has amounted to only $300 million. >
> Albert Einstein was a refugee and the U.S. was founded by immigrants. But > the lack of action or desire to help from Western countries, which include > the world’s richest governments, makes us think that the free-market > economies embrace free circulation of all merchandise except people. “Our > world has never been richer or healthier or more advanced. Yet never before > have so many people been dispossessed and stripped of their basic human > rights,” Jolie said in Midyat. “This is a central problem. We cannot pick > and choose which human rights violations we will and won’t tolerate,” she > added. But it looks like rich countries are largely free of these concerns. > The U.S., for example, a world giant, has taken in 267,000 refugees, less > than one-fifth of Turkey’s refugee population. The U.S. and other developed > countries should be taking the lead in solving the issue of providing rooms > for refugees and sharing the burden equally. However, while they are even > reluctant to help by providing food and tents, there is not much > hope.Unfortunately, there is another sickness in the West, and it is > spreading. If even a boat of immigrants swells the society’s xenophobic > reactions, what would an influx of refugees do to the industrialized > countries? Could the societies in Europe deal with the number of refugees > Turkey is hosting without any social blow?
> Today, it is clear that the international system is not working. Millions of > people and their right to a better future are ignored, they are harassed, > insulted and demonized, as if being displaced due to wars, persecution and > conflicts are not enough. This will haunt the world for decades.
Source: Merve Sebnem Oruç – Daily Sabah