NEW YORK – UNHCR asked you to show solidarity with millions of refugees and more than 1.3 million of you have come forward and signed UNHCR’s #WithRefugees petition. Thank you.
To ensure the call is heard in the highest places, it will now be handed in to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the President of the UN General Assembly, Peter Thomson, this afternoon in New York.
The appeal will be delivered by UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi, together with refugees and prominent UNHCR supporters, in a symbolic gesture just days before the UN Summit on Refugees and Migrants on September 19.
When the petition was launched in June, Grandi spoke about why UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, was making such a public call to support refugees.
‘’We are in a period of deepening conflict and turmoil in the world, which is causing many more people to flee their homes than before,” said Grandi.
“It affects and involves us all, and what it needs is understanding, compassion and political will to come together and find real answers for the refugee plight. This has become a defining challenge of our times.
“In 2015, millions of people were newly displaced, adding again to the global refugee and internal displacement totals. Overwhelmingly, it was countries of the developing world that were most affected, but Europe too witnessed dramatic scenes, as hundreds of thousands of people crossed the Mediterranean in search of safety and refuge. Thousands died along the way.”
The petition calls on representatives of the 193 governments attending the Summit to make sure all refugee children can go to school; that all refugees have a safe place to live and that all refugees can work and contribute to their local community.