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| 12 February, 2018

Forced displacement among most pressing challenges in MENA: World Bank report

In 2016, there were an estimated 65.6 million people forcibly displaced around the world

Displaced Syrian children stand outside of their tents at Kelbit refugee camp, near the Syrian-Turkish border, in Idlib province, Syria January 17, 2018. Picture taken January 17, 2018.

Displaced Syrian children stand outside of their tents at Kelbit refugee camp, near the Syrian-Turkish border, in Idlib province, Syria January 17, 2018. Picture taken January 17, 2018.

REUTERS/Osman Orsal

KUALA LUMPUR: Forced displacement is among the most pressing challenges in the Middle East North Africa (MENA) region. The number of people forcibly displaced worldwide continues to increase, particularly in MENA, where waves of unrest and conflict have driven a huge increase in displacement, says a new World Bank report released at the World Urban Forum (WUF9), being hosted by Malaysia from 7th to 13th February.

In 2016, there were an estimated 65.6 million people forcibly displaced around the world, of which about one-quarter were living in countries across the MENA region. For each refugee displaced in MENA, there are almost five internally displaced people (IDPs),according to the new, "Cities of Refuge in the Middle East: Bringing an Urban Lens to the Forced Displacement Challenge" report.

As the refugee crisis in the Middle East wears on, the report calls for a concerted effort from communities, local authorities, national government, and the international community to apply an urban development framework in thinking about forced displacement from an urban angle.

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The World Urban Forum (WUF), a non-legislative technical forum convened by the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) held since 2002, gathers a wide range of policymakers, local government leaders, non-governmental organizations and expert practitioners to raise awareness of sustainable urbanization; improve the collective knowledge of sustainable urban development through inclusive open debates, sharing of lessons learned and the exchange of best practices and good policies; and increase coordination and cooperation between different stakeholders and constituencies for the advancement and implementation of sustainable urbanization.

© Copyright Emirates News Agency (WAM) 2018.