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Lack of action to address internal displacement crisis is no longer an option, UN says

LONDON: Inaction is no longer an option for the international community in response to the needs of millions of internally displaced people around the world, according to a report by a high-level panel officially submitted to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Wednesday .

The study, which was handed over by panel co-chairs Donald Kaberuka and Federica Mogherini, calls for regional and international solutions to problems affecting more than 55 million internally displaced people.

When he received the report, titled Shedding light on internal displacement: a vision for the future, Guterres said the problems faced by internally displaced people differ from those of the 26 million refugees around the world, and therefore different solutions are needed. He underscored the report’s mandate to make recommendations on feasible ways to better prevent, respond and develop solutions to the internal displacement crisis, and the need for new strategies and policies to do so.

“For several decades, the number of internally displaced people in the world has been increasing, reaching records year after year,” he said. “Humanitarian aid is vital to help them survive, but more is needed to restore a sense of normalcy and provide solutions. “

The report urges governments and states to take a “developmental approach” to solutions for citizens and residents displaced by violence, conflict, disasters and the effects of climate change.

Unlike refugees, Guterres said, displaced people remain citizens of their country with the same rights as non-displaced citizens, and therefore states have a “responsibility” to face their plight.

Panel Co-Chair Kaberuka said: “It is in the best interest of governments to take ownership of this issue as they cannot achieve the Sustainable Development Goals without improving the lives of all displaced people, women and people. displaced children to the elderly.

Mogherini added: “Given the current state of conflict and the trajectory of urbanization and climate change, it is time to act. Maintaining the status quo is not an option.

The panel was formed after 57 UN member states in May 2019 called on Guterres to establish an independent high-level panel to examine the global internal displacement crisis. Countries expressed concern that “international attention to internal displacement has been insufficient in relation to growing needs”.

The resulting report confirms and deplores this “collective failure” to tackle internal displacement and includes a number of recommendations for action to bring about the changes in approaches and practices necessary to end unnecessary suffering, including one is a strengthening of the leadership of the UN. .

The report also recommended the creation of a Global Internal Displacement Solutions Fund to help countries overcome key obstacles to developing and implementing solutions.

Other key recommendations include:

– Make solutions a national and whole-of-government priority

– Political will is essential and must be catalyzed

– Ensure that the whole of society is involved in the issue

– Make better use of the capacities of the private sector when developing solutions

– Make the UN adapted to its objective and responsible for solutions

– Exploit international funding for solutions

– Improve the efficient use of internal displacement data

– Tackle the factors of displacement and reduce the risk of displacement

– Strengthen the quality of protection and assistance provided to internally displaced persons and their host communities

– Maintain momentum and ensure robust monitoring procedures


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