Geneva, 17 December 2023(TDI): The 2nd Global Refugee Forum, an international cooperation forum, ended after three days with promises to improve the lives of refugees as well as the states and organizations that support them.
The forum, coordinated by UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and Switzerland, was held in Geneva from December 13 to 15, involving 4,200 delegates from 168 countries, and over 10,000 people participated remotely.
Delegates additionally highlighted guidelines and promised to improve the lives of refugees in areas such as education, job availability, promoting peace, environmental sustainability, and resolving issues related to relocation.
Collaboration and Leadership
During the Global Refugee Forum’s ending session, UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi announced significant global milestones due to the 700,000 internally displaced individuals in Myanmar since October, bringing the total number of IDPs to almost 2.5 million.
Additionally, in just eight months, the brutal violence in Sudan has pushed seven million people out of their homes, he added.
He highlighted that “The Global Refugee Forum ended tonight with 1600 pledges by states, organizations, businesses, and civil society to support refugees and their hosts globally.” He went on to say, “In these dark times, this shines a light for millions who otherwise would be left behind.”
In addition, Filippo Grandi remarked, “Participants have demonstrated leadership, vision, and creativity in the search for solutions to very complex problems.” Above all, they have promised to keep collaborating to raise the standard of living for millions of refugees globally.
At the 2nd Global Refugee Forum’s closing ceremony in Geneva, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres stated that providing protection and assistance to these poorest individuals was “an obligation shared by all of humanity.”
Furthermore, as UN General Secretary Antonio Guterres says, “I saw the courage and endurance of those who were forced to flee as well as the kindness of communities that accepted them during my ten years as High Commissioner for Refugees.”
Ambassador Asif Durrani, Special Representative for Afghanistan, represented Pakistan at the meeting. He emphasized that, forty years later, Pakistan was still providing shelter, protection, and assistance to 1.4 million Afghan refugees, fulfilling its duty to receive, protect, and support refugees globally.
He further added: “We reiterate our commitment to Afghan refugees, who have the same access to basic necessities as citizens of Pakistan,” he stated at the Forum, which is the biggest international conference on refugees and host communities.
Ambassador Durrani indicated, “This is despite the fact that Pakistan still struggles with the threefold crises of food, fuel, and inflation, like many other developing countries.”
He continued, saying, “We sincerely hope that the international community as a whole will continue to demonstrate its responsibility by providing Pakistan as a host country with persistent and necessary help.”
At the end of the 2nd Global Refugee Forum, over 2.2 billion dollars were pledged by states, businesses, charitable organizations, and religious groups to address refugees and host communities in policy, funding tools, and programs.
Reports also suggest that governments and organizations promise to help more than three million migrants via public contributions and global sponsorship funding, whereas states pledge to resettle one million refugees by 2030.