Displaced person

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Displaced persons in 2015[1]
Total population
63.912 million
Regions with significant populations
Refugees 15.483 million
IDPs 37.494 million
Asylum seekers 3.219 million
People in refugee-like situation 637,534
The Amam refugee camp is named after its first native, born in 2009. Its name, Amam, means peace

A displaced person (sometimes abbreviated DP) is a person who has been forced to leave his or her home or place of habitual residence, a phenomenon known as forced migration.

According to the UNHCR, there were 59.5 million forcibly displaced people worldwide at the end of 2014, the highest level since World War II: 19.5 million were refugees, 1.8 million asylum seekers and 38.2 million internally displaced persons.[2]

Origin of term[edit]

The term was first widely used during World War II and the resulting refugee outflows from Eastern Europe,[3] when it was used to specifically refer to one removed from his or her native country as a refugee, prisoner or a slave laborer. The meaning has significantly broadened in the past half-century. A displaced person may also be referred to as a forced migrant. The term "refugee" is also commonly used as a synonym for displaced person, causing confusion between the general descriptive class of anyone who has left their home and the subgroup of legally defined refugees who enjoy specified international legal protection. Most of the victims of war, political refugees and DPs of the immediate post-Second World War period were Ukrainians, Poles, other Slavs, as well as citizens of the Baltic states - Lithuanians, Latvians, and Estonians, who refused to return to Soviet-dominated eastern Europe.

A.J. Jaffe claimed that the term was originally coined by Eugene M. Kulischer.[4]

Overview[edit]

Further information: Refugee law and Refugee

If the displaced person has crossed an international border and falls under one of the relevant international legal instruments, they may become considered a refugee.[5] A displaced person who left his or her home because of political persecution or violence, but did not cross an international border, is commonly considered to be the less well-defined category of internally displaced person (IDP), and is subject to more tenuous international protection. Bogumil Terminski distinguishes two general categories of internal displacement: displacement of risk (mostly conflict-induced displacement, deportations and disaster-induced displacement) and displacement of adaptation (associated with voluntary resettlement, development-induced displacement and environmentally-induced displacement). A displaced person who crosses an international border without permission from the country they are entering, and without applying for asylum, may be considered an illegal immigrant.

If the displaced person was forced out their home because of economically driven projects like that of the Three Gorges Dam in China and various Indian dams, it is called development-induced displacement. People are also often displaced due to natural or man-made disasters. Displacement can also occur as a result of slow-onset climate change, such as desertification or sea-level rise. A person who is displaced due to environmental factors which negatively impact his or her livelihood is generally known as an environmental migrant. Such displacement can be cross-border in nature but is frequently internal. No specific international legal instrument applies to such individuals. Foreign nations often offer disaster relief to mitigate the effects of such disaster displacement. Displaced person generally refers to one who is forced to migrate for reasons other than economic conditions, such as war or persecution. A migrant who fled because of economic hardship is an economic migrant.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ UNHCR (4 September 2016). "UNHCR worldwide population overview". UNHCR. Retrieved 4 September 2016. 
  2. ^ "UNHCR – Global Trends –Forced Displacement in 2014". UNHCR. 18 June 2015. 
  3. ^ Mark Wyman: Dps: Europe's Displaced Persons, 1945-1951. Cornell University Press 1998 (reprint). ISBN 0-8014-8542-8.
  4. ^ A. J. Jaffe: Notes on the Population Theory of Eugene M. Kulischer. In: The Milbank Memorial Fund Quarterly, Vol. 40, No. 2. (April 1962). Pp. 187-206.(online)
  5. ^ U.N. Convention relating to status of Refugees Archived March 9, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.

Bibliography[edit]

  • Luciuk, Lubomyr, "Ukrainian Displaced Persons, Canada and the Migration of Memory," University of Toronto Press, 2000.

External links[edit]