The decision to repatriate voluntarily is an individual one that is affected by many factors, including the circumstances surrounding flight and conditions for return.

Globally, UNHCR plays a leading role, collaborating with States and other partners to promote, facilitate, and coordinate voluntary repatriation in safety and dignity.

In Syria, in addition to responding to situations of new and protracted displacement, UNHCR has enhanced its engagement in communities where spontaneous self-organised refugee and IDP returns are taking place to address needs and help build resilience through a range of multi-sector interventions.

Some 170,000 spontaneous IDP return movements were reported by the UN in 2021 compared to 448,000 IDP return movements recorded in 2020.

During 2021, UNHCR verified or monitored the spontaneous and self-organized return of 35,800 Syrian refugees from neighbouring countries – a drop from 38,200 in 2020 and representing a significant decrease compared with 2019 (95,000). The numbers reported are only those verified or monitored by UNHCR and do not reflect the entire number of refugee returns, which may be significantly higher.