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There were 3 million more refugees last year, according to UN

Refugees rest on the roadside after police stopped them near the border between Austria and Germany, in Salzburg, Austria, Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015. (AP Photo/Kerstin Joensson)

Zelda Caldwell - published on 06/19/18

Record number of wars, displaced people in 2017

The United Nations refugee agency reported that almost 69 million people fleeing war, violence and persecution were forcibly displaced from their homes last year. That’s an increase of almost three million refugees over the previous year.

The UN high commissioner on refugees, Filippo Grandi, told reporters at a press conference in Geneva that more than two thirds of the refugees came from only a handful of countries.

Topping the list is Syria (1.5 million refugees), followed by Afghanistan (2.6 million) and South Sudan (2.4 million).

Rohingya refugees from Myanmar (700,000), those fleeing the political and economic collapse in Venezuela (1.5), and the violence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (4.4 million) pushed the number of refugees helped fuel the global refugee crisis.

Last year the world also witnessed the highest number of countries involved in “violent conflicts” in 30 years, the United Nations secretary-general, Antonio Guterres told the Oslo Forum today.

Guterres told a panel on peacemaking that the number of wars has tripled since 2007 and that the number of “low-intensity conflicts” rose by 60 percent in that time, according to an AP report.

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