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UN refugee agency applauds United States for latest global funding

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UN refugee agency applauds United States for latest global funding

14 April 2016

Washington, DC, 14 April 2016 (UNHCR) – The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) today expressed its gratitude to the US government and the American people for their latest funding announcement of almost US$421 million to the UN refugee agency’s global operations.

“This latest funding from the United States further demonstrates its humanitarian commitment to our emergency work, particularly at a time when the world is grappling with the largest refugee crisis of our time,” said UNHCR Regional Representative in the United States, Shelly Pitterman.

“The UN refugee agency relies on the generous contributions of donor governments in order to deliver life-saving humanitarian assistance across the globe and there is no doubt that refugees will benefit directly from this major US contribution.”

War, conflict and persecution have forced around 60 million people worldwide to flee for their lives, the largest number since World War II. Nearly 20 million of these are refugees and more than half are children. Around 42,500 women, girls, boys and men are becoming refugees, asylum seekers or internally displaced every day.

Today’s announcement by the United States is in addition to the US$191 million contribution to UNHCR for its Syria operations that US Secretary of State John Kerry announced at the London conference in February.

The Syrian conflict, now into its sixth year, is the main reason for such a surge in the number of persons worldwide seeking safety, however Europe, the Americas, Middle East and North Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia are all seeing increases in the number of persons fleeing.

UNHCR is working to alleviate humanitarian crises across the globe and this current US commitment will help support all the UN refugee agency’s operations.