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World Refugee Day 20th June: Sovereign Order of Malta launches international campaign - 'No to the construction of walls'

Malteser International and the Order of Malta network provide help for refugees and asylum seekers worldwide

Rome/Cologne: World Refugee Day, established ten years ago by the UN General Assembly, will be celebrated on Saturday 20 June 2015. This year, the Sovereign Order of Malta is launching a campaign in the countries where it is present, to raise public awareness of this worldwide drama. All the Order of Malta’s organisations will draw attention to the world refugee problem through social media and information channels.

“The drama of refugees will not cease over the coming decade. It is no use erecting walls and barriers. Faced with this drama and the desperation of millions of people, we now have to find new humanitarian assistance schemes, new forms of cooperation with the countries of origin and which also take into account the asymmetric wars currently being fought by forces that do not represent states,” the Grand Chancellor of the Sovereign Order of Malta, Albrecht Boeselager, said in his video statement for World Refugee Day.

Present in 120 countries with 80,000 volunteers, 33 Rescue Corps, a worldwide relief agency - Malteser International, 57 Priories and national Associations and an established diplomatic network with over 100 countries, the Sovereign Order of Malta is on the front line offering assistance to refugees and displaced people, both in the countries involved in the conflicts and in the final destinations of asylum seekers.

The number of refugees and displaced persons worldwide has reached levels not recorded since the end of World War II. In Syria, over four years of conflict now mean that a family is forced to leave home every 60 seconds. It is calculated that every 3 seconds a person becomes displaced in some part of the world. 52 million people are in flight from disasters, wars and famine. Half of them are children. Some 17 million are refugees, over 33 million are internally displaced - that is, forced to leave their homes although staying in their country - and about 1.5 million are asylum seekers. In 2014, there were 866,000 new asylum applications in the industrialised countries - the majority were Syrians, followed by Iraqis. Numbers that reflect a world in flames with burgeoning new crises and old trouble spots flaring up.

Present in 120 countries with 80,000 volunteers, 33 Rescue Corps, a worldwide relief agency - Malteser International, 57 Priories and national Associations and an established diplomatic network with over 100 countries, the Sovereign Order of Malta is on the front line offering assistance to refugees and displaced people, both in the countries involved in the conflicts and in the final destinations of asylum seekers.

Contact

Katharina Kiecol
+49-(0)221-9822-155
Email: katharina.kiecol(at)malteser-international.org

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