According to the UN High Commissioner on Refugees, there are now almost 10 million displaced people on Earth with a 14 per cent increase recorded in 2006.
The figure does not include the palestinians, which should be because they're not refugees but is actually due to the fact the UN has a special refugee department, the UN Reliefs and Works Agency that does nothing but suck up to the palestinians.
Anyway, the head of the UNHCR is naturally very concerned about this situation and predicts more and more people will become displaced and that economic and environmental refugees will join the more common class of refugees created through armed conflict.
What is amazing is that Antonio Guterres actually understands why, which is the UN equivalent of a blind pig finding a truffle.
"What is worrying is that this is happening in the absence of international capacity and determination to respond," Guterres, the former prime minister of Portugal was quoted as saying.
Exactly. The situation is worsening because organizations like the UN have failed, miserably failed, to get the world determined to respond to anything. And, what's worse,but which Guterres doesn't say, is that in many cases, the UN is absolutely complicit in allowing all kinds of human rights violations occur on a wide scale, leading to, among other things, displaced persons.
The EU is also complicit. NATO less so, but not entirely innocent. The Chinese, the arab league and a hodgepodge of other countries or groups even more so.
What we need to learn is that in order to prevent such abuses, we need to tie aid and largesse to human rights improvements and a cessation of mindless violence. It does not serve the average person in most nations receiving aid at all to prop up dictatorships and oligarchies with large infusions of cash. The cash doesn't reach the people; it gets diverted into luxuries and bank accounts. If we're going to spend our money, let us use it to buy some freedoms.
Guterres' comment isn't going to get much play but it should. Because it's got a germ of the idea of what's happening. Common sense is sadly lacking in UN and diplomatic circles and should be promoted and augmented whenever found.