World Refugee Day: 65.6m people forced from their homes

In that past 12 months, Uganda has taken in more refugees than any other country in the world.

FILE: Refugee children arrive at the Turkish border crossing gate as Syrians flee the northern city of Aleppo. Picture: AFP.

PRETORIA - World Refugee Day is being marked on Tuesday and has significance for Africa, which houses a third of the displaced people in the world.

In the past 12 months, Uganda has taken in more refugees than any other country in the world.

Africa has two of the world’s largest refugee camps, Dadaab in Kenya and Bidi Bidi in Uganda.

They house some of the 18 million displaced people in Africa.

No fewer than 12,5 million of these people have been put out of their homes in their own countries.

Worldwide, a record 65.6 million people were forced from their homes due to conflict or persecution by the end of 2016, according to the United Nations.

2016 data from the UNHCR on the number of displaced people and refugees in the world.

Below are some facts from the UN refugee agency's Global Trends Report published.

  • One in 113 people worldwide is displaced. - A record 65.6 million people were forcibly displaced at the end of 2016 - more than the population of Britain - and an increase of 300,000 over the previous year.

  • This included 22.5 million refugees, 40.3 million uprooted within their countries and 2.8 million asylum seekers.

  • One person became displaced every three seconds in 2016.

  • More than half of refugees globally come from three countries: Syria, Afghanistan and South Sudan.

  • The fastest growing refugee population was spurred by the crisis in South Sudan.

  • Nearly two-thirds of Syrians have been forced to flee their homes.

  • Developing regions host 84% of the world's refugees.

  • Lebanon cares for the largest number of refugees relative to its national population, with one in six people a refugee, followed by Jordan (one in 11) and Turkey (one in 28).

  • Turkey hosts the largest number of refugees (2.9 million) followed by Pakistan (1.4m) and Lebanon (1m).

  • Children under 18 make up just over half the refugee population.

  • There were 2 million new asylum claims in 2016. Germany received the highest number, followed by the United States, Italy and Turkey.

  • Unaccompanied or separated children - mainly Afghans and Syrians - lodged some 75,000 applications in 70 countries in 2016. But this is thought to be an underestimate as the data is incomplete.

  • Some 189,300 refugees were accepted for resettlement by 37 countries.

  • Some 552,200 refugees returned to their countries of origin - more than double the previous year. Most returned to Afghanistan.

  • At least 10 million people are estimated to be stateless.

Additional reporting by Reuters.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)