A new report by the U.N. refugee agency (UNHCR) says a record of 65.6 million people who are either refugees, asylum seekers were displaced worldwide at the end of 2016.
According to the UNHCR’s annual Global Trends survey which was revealed today, the new figures surpasses the 2015 report by 300,000, consisting of 40.3 million internally displaced people, 22.5 million refugees and 2.8 million asylum seekers worldwide.
‘By any measure this is an unacceptable number,’ said Filipo Grandi, the U.N. high commissioner for refugees. He called the figures a failure of diplomacy, reports BBC News.
“The world seems to have become unable to make peace,” he said, adding that conflicts old and new are both resulting in forced displacement of people, “a symbol for wars that never end.”
The conflict in Syria alone has displaced 12 million people overall, meaning that 65% of the country’s whole population are either internally displaced or have become refugees outside the country.
The UN, however, said it hoped Monday’s record-breaking numbers of displaced would encourage wealthy countries to think again, not just to accept more refugees, but to invest in peace promotion, and reconstruction.