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Who Welcomes Most Refugees — not the US, not Europe
June 17, 2017, 5:06 pm

With more people than ever fleeing home since World War Two and the world faced with the worst migration crisis in decades, the natural assumption would be that countries with the most capacity would be the ones stepping forward and doing something about the global refugee crisis.

A recent survey across five continents showed that people mistakenly believe that wealthy Western countries are the ones opening their arms widest to welcome refugees. According to the survey conducted by Aurora Humanitarian Initiative (AHI), most respondents thought the United States, France and Germany accepted the largest number of refugees over the last decade.

However, Pakistan, Iran and Turkey welcomed the most refugees and asylum seekers over that time period — some 10 million people, according to data by the United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR) cited as part of the findings.

The United States and Germany took in some 3.5 million people, in the past decade according to AHI. The study cited no figure for France because it did not rank among the top 15 nations to have admitted refugees and asylum seekers over the last decade.

The survey of some 6,500 adults polled in 12 countries in February and March comes as more than 65 million people have been driven from their homes by war and poverty in the Middle East, Africa and elsewhere, according to UNHCR. Survey respondents lived in France, Germany, the United Kingdom, the United States, Argentina, Armenia, Iran, Japan, Kenya, Lebanon, Russia and Turkey.

Earlier this year, US President Donald Trump signed an executive order capping the total number of refugees allowed in the United States to 50,000 this year. Europeans have for their part signaled resentment over the surge of refugees in their countries, including in Germany, which has accepted more refugees than any other country in Europe.

AHI is a global platform that supports people and promotes projects that tackle the needs of the most helpless and destitute around the world. It was founded on behalf of the survivors of the Armenian Genocide (1915-1923) and in gratitude to their saviors.

In a strap-line to their poll, the Yerevan, Armenia-based charity said, “It is a sign of humanitarian morass worldwide that our poll also found that, only a third of respondents were willing to welcome more refugees in the future.” It added that now, more than ever, it was important to empower modern-day saviors to offer life and hope to those in urgent need of basic humanitarian aid, and thus continue the cycle of giving globally.


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