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UNHCR welcomes generous US decision on refugee resettlement, urges other countries to step up

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UNHCR welcomes generous US decision on refugee resettlement, urges other countries to step up

30 September 2023
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WASHINGTON – UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, commends the United States for its decision to admit up to 125,000 refugees for resettlement over the fiscal year beginning October 2023, highlighting the global need for safe and legal pathways for those forcibly displaced.

The US has made significant strides in extending the life-saving solution of resettlement to more refugees in vulnerable situations – more than doubling resettlement this fiscal year compared to the previous one. UNHCR will continue to support the US government, civil society organizations and refugees to make the programme a success in the coming year. 

“This remarkable demonstration of compassion and leadership will provide many people forced to flee with hope away from home – an opportunity and a place to rebuild their lives in safety and dignity,” said Matthew Reynolds, UNHCR Representative to the United States and the Caribbean. “Put simply, it will save and transform many lives.” 

UNHCR estimates that currently over 2 million refugees are in need of resettlement globally. In 2022, UNHCR offices around the world referred refugees for resettlement to 25 countries that are offering this valuable solution and demonstrating solidarity with the countries hosting refugees and asylum-seekers. UNHCR coordinates resettlement globally and ensures its timely and efficient processing.

While the world continues to grapple with the fallout of conflict and violence, solutions for the displaced must be expanded, including through resettlement and other legal pathways like humanitarian admission, family reunification and community sponsorship, as well as skill-based education and labour opportunities.

The US Welcome Corps, a private sponsorship programme for refugees created in January 2023, is an important and innovative contribution to provide more refugees with access to education opportunities and family reunification. 

Seventy-six per cent of the world’s refugees are hosted in low- and middle-income countries. UNHCR urges more countries to step up and provide resettlement places and other pathways for admission for those hosted in countries of asylum.

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