Qudrat Ullah

Around the globe, there are 100 million forcibly displaced people and turned into refugees. If they had their own country it would be the 15th biggest in the world larger than Vietnam, Turkey, and Germany.

By country, the biggest crisis in the world right now is the Ukraine war; accounting for 14 million people who’ve had to leave their homes. After Ukraine, Syrians make up the second largest population of refugees today at 6.8 million people.

Moreover, there are 5.8 million Palestinians forcibly displaced, this is the world’s longest-running refugee crisis, and decades of war in Afghanistan have forcibly displaced 2.6 million people.

Turkey is home to the most refugees in the world followed by Jordan, Colombia, Uganda, and Pakistan; predominantly low and middle-income countries.

Many of the refugees end up in camps like the Kutupalong refugee camp in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, home to Rohingya refugees fleeing persecution in Myanmar.

With a hundred million people displaced in 2022, United Nations has warned that climate change and other crises could force another 1 billion people from their homes by 2050.

Most people experience leaving the place where they grew up. However, they will only move as far as the next village or city. Though some people will need to leave their country entirely.

Sometimes for a short time, but sometimes forever. Every day, all over the world, people make one of the most difficult decisions in their lives; to leave their homes in search of a safer, better life.

There are many reasons why people around the globe seek to rebuild their lives in a different country. Some people leave home to get a job or an education.

Nevertheless, others are forced to flee persecution or human rights violations such as torture. Millions flee from armed conflicts or other crises or violence.

Some no longer feel safe and might have been targeted just because of who they are or what they do or believe, for example, for their ethnicity, religion, sexuality, or political opinions.

During the US withdrawal from Afghanistan in August 2021, the whole world witnessed the chaotic scenes at Kabul International Airport.

People desperate to leave clung to the planes carrying refugees out of the war-torn country. Most of the people were those who had directly or indirectly worked with US and allied forces.

They left their native country because of fear for their lives as the Taliban inched closer to Kabul and then eventually took control of the whole country.

Consequently, thousands of refugees fled to Pakistan through the border crossings. Pakistan has been already keeping 1.4 million registered Afghan refugees since 2001.

Despite that, it opened its doors to the Afghans, who were either trying to get refuge in the neighboring country or use it as a transit for their next destination, i.e. Europe and the US.

A developing country like Pakistan, which already is facing challenges in terms of security and economy, had accepted desperate Afghans in difficult times. There are around 1.5 million unregistered Afghans residing in the country and they are now part of the economy.

In 2008, while the War on Terror and subsequent terrorism wreaked havoc on Pakistan, the security forces to tackle the menace, had to displace millions of people in tribal areas of former FATA and KPK.

They were called Internally Displaced People (IDPs) and later in coming years after the situation got normal, they were re-located to their areas.

The War on Terror lost much and left countries including Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iran in peril, both in terms of security, and economy.

Those countries who had invaded Afghanistan for their power and strategic interests had already left and handed over it to neighboring countries to clean up the mess.

It can be said that the reason for doing so in case of Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Palestine, Afghanistan, and now Ukraine is due to the unaccountability of global and regional powers, using the underdeveloped countries to settle their score in power politics.

Due to this reason, the wars will never end, and the consequences of it in the shape of forced displacements of people will make the world more unsecure and unstable.

Likewise, it will also have an impact on the global economy, and security along with the proliferation of racism, particularly in the West.


*The writer is a freelancer and media activist. He writes on political developments and security issues with a special focus on South Asia and the region. He can be reached at quddrat89@gmail.com

**The Diplomatic Insight does not take any position on issues and the views represented herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Diplomatic Insight and its staff.

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