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  • World Refugee Day: 60 Million Displaced

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    We mark World Refugee Day with the stark reality that nearly 60 million people around the world are living in displacement, having been forced by violence or conflict to flee their homes. We asked five former refugees for their thoughts. 

     

    Atim Caroline Ogwang Thumbnail

    "Let us live in peace, stop the violence, forgive each other. Let us send our child to school, especially those with disabilities, because they are the leaders of tomorrow."

    ~Atim Caroline Ogwang

    A former refugee from South Sudan, Caroline now lives in Uganda and attends Cavendish University. Like so many, conflict left her with a physical disability. Her focus is still the violence in her home country.  

    Women and girls with disabilities are often excluded from protective programs.

     

    Sima Samar thumbnail

    "I am very worried about war crimes, particularly sexually based violence, committed every day without any accountability."

    ~Sima Samar

    A former refugee from Afghanistan, Sima has returned to Kabul and serves as chairperson for the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission. She remains focused on the crisis in her country and the region, particularly violence against women.  

     

    The humanitarian system can better protect refugee women and girls. 

     

    Zrinka Bralo thumbnail

    "There is no place on earth where we can hide from our shared responsibility."

    ~Zrinka Bralo

    A former refugee from Bosnia, Zrinka now lives in London and campaigns for the rights of immigrants. Her concerns are the warehousing of Syrian refugees and the failure of Europe to provide sanctuary to African migrants.  

     

    The humanitarian system can better protect refugee women and girls. 

     

    Diana Nammi thumbnail

    "In responding to crises we must prevent child marriages, which steal girl's lives and subject them to a lifetime of abuse."

    ~Diana Nammi

    A former refugee from Iran, Diana lives in London and is the Executive Director of the Iranian & Kurdish Women's Rights Organisation. She remains concerned about the impact fundamentalism and war on women, particularly in Syria, Iraq, Kurdistan and Iran. 

     

    Adolescent refugee girls need freedom from child marriage. 

     

    Mary Tal thumbnail

    "Overcoming this challenge means we have to lobby beyond our present justice systems."

    ~Mary Tal

    A former refugee from Cameroon, Mary is now the Director of the Whole World Women Association in Cape Town, South Africa. Her primary focus is the refugee crisis in South Africa and the resent outbreak of xenophobic attacks targeting refugees, asylum seekers and economic migrants.   

    The current American detention process fails refugees.

    tags: Children