World Refugee Day: 10 facts about refugees you need to know


20 June 2017

By: Amnesty International Thailand 


“Refugee” is a person who is oppressed and risks persecution in their own country because of their race, ethnicity, nationality, religion or political views. They are therefore forced to leave their home to seek safety in neighbouring countries. They are often seen as ‘asylum seekers’ until they are recognized and gain refugee status from either the UNHCR or a government.


There are asylum seekers/refugees from 50 countries residing in Thailand but all are considered ‘illegal immigrants’ since Thailand does not have laws that recognize refugees. UNHCR becomes the only channel where asylum seekers can apply for their refugee status in a third country.


 The refugee crisis today affects many places around the world. This result is a longer stay in the country they first arrive in. 




1. There are 21.3 million refugees around the world

2. 49% are women and children who are more vulnerable than other refugees

3. Each day, there are 34,000 people who are forced to flee due to war or persecution.

4. 53% of refugees around the world come from 3 countries; Syria 4.9 million, Afghanistan 2.7 million, Somalia 1.1 million.

5. The 3 countries that receive the highest number of refugees are Turkey 2.5 million, Pakistan 1.6 million, Lebanon 1.1 million.

6. Today there are around 100,000 refugees in Thailand.

7. Most of the refugees in Thailand reside in 9 camps along Thai-Myanmar border.

8. Those refugees are ethnic minorities who escaped fightings from Myanmar

9. There are 8,000 urban refugees residing in Bangkok and surrounding areas

10. Urban refugees are from 50 countries including Pakistan, Vietnam, Somalia, Iraq, Palestine and Syria.