According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the number of forcibly displaced people around the world has now reached 100 million. The war in Ukraine contributed majorly to pushing up already high numbers. UNHCR estimates that 6.5 million people have fled the country since Russia invaded at the end of February. In late 2021, there were already 90 million displaced people worldwide, including refugees, asylum-seekers and internally displaced people, according to preliminary figures.
The latest official UNHCR figures from 2020 had revealed a continuing upward trend. At the end of that year, there were 82.4 million refugees, asylum-seekers and internally displaced people. As our infographic shows, that figure is in sharp contrast to the 42.7 million people recorded in 2012, and even as recently as the 59.2 million in 2014. The 2020 increase happened despite the coronavirus pandemic leading to border closures and movement restrictions. As cited in the 2020 UNHCR report, the UN had even expected 1.5 million more refugees around the world in 2020 had it not been for Covid-19.