More than 8 million people were newly internally displaced by conflict and violence in 2013. The situation was particularly bleak in Syria where 3.5 million people fled their homes to escape from bombings and other threats in the country shaken by civil war. On a global scale, a record total of 33 million people were internally displaced by the end of 2013, according to the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre.
The United Nations define internally displaced people (IDPs) as follows: Internally displaced people are “persons or groups of persons who have been forced or obliged to flee or to leave their homes or places of habitual residence, in particular as a result of or in order to avoid the effects of armed conflict, situations of generalised violence, violations of human rights or natural or human-made disasters, and who have not crossed an internationally recognised state border.”
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