Africa: World Refugee Day - Over 82 Million Have Fled Home

Johannesburg — WAR, violence and persecution has forced more than 82,4 million people from their homes globally.

Filippo Grandi, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) disclosed the figures as the globe marked World Refugee Day on Sunday.

The envoy said in the past three years alone, some 1 million children were born into a life of exile.

Grandi criticised world leaders for being seemingly unable or unwilling to make peace.

"Today, World Refugee Day, should serve as a stark reminder to politicians of the need to do more to prevent and resolve conflict (wars) and crises," he said.

Grandi added, "Simply put, leaders need to step up and work together to solve today's global challenges."

He said the day was also an opportunity to celebrate the fortitude of refugees.

"... those who have been stripped of everything and yet carry on, often bearing the visible and invisible wounds of war, persecution and the anxiety of exile."

World Refugee Day is an international day organised every year on June 20.

The UN first established the day in 2001, in recognition of the 50th anniversary of the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees.

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