Turkey needs support from international community on refugees: UNCHR chief
U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi has called on the international community to provide support and show solidarity to Turkey and other host countries that have been hosting millions of Syrian refugees since the start of the civil war in the Middle Eastern country.
“Refugee situations will exist as long as there are conflicts. Ending refugee situations requires political solutions, but until that happens, host countries, including Turkey, and host communities need support and solidarity from the international community,” said Grandi, according to a written statement by the UNHCR on Sept. 5.
Grandi held meetings in Ankara and met with Turkish Vice President Fuat Oktay; Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu; Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu; Family, Labor and Social Services Minister Zehra Zümrüt and Deputy Education Minister Reha Denemeç, as well as Director General Abdullah Ayaz, and staff of the Directorate General of Migration Management, the state institution responsible for refugees in Turkey.
The visit also provided the opportunity to meet refugees at a UNHCR-supported social services center of Family, Labor and Social Services Ministry and a vocational training center of the Ankara Metropolitan Municipality, where he was joined by Ankara Mayor Mansur Yavaş.
In his meetings with the government, Grandi reiterated the UNHCR’s commitment to continue its cooperation with and support for Turkey, recognizing its important role as the country hosting the largest refugee population in the world for five consecutive years. The high commissioner discussed recent developments in the region as well as in Turkey and received with appreciation assurances of Turkey’s continued commitment to refugee protection. The situation in Idlib was also subject of the discussions, where a humanitarian catastrophe needs to be prevented and all done to protect civilians.
The high commissioner welcomed Turkey’s role as co-convener of the upcoming Global Refugee Forum in Geneva in December. The forum will provide a unique occasion for states and others to come together and announce bold measures they will take to ease pressure on host countries, boost refugee self-reliance, and search for solutions.
“Refugee situations send ripples across entire regions and beyond. Dealing with displacement challenges cannot be done alone and requires unity of vision and ambition among all countries coupled with real, concrete action. This is the goal of the Global Compact on Refugees and it is what we will be working towards through the Global Refugee Forum,” said Grandi.