The United Nations says the refugee crisis resulting from the Syrian conflict is the worst since the 1994 genocide in Rwanda.
“We have not seen a refugee outflow escalate at such a frightening rate since the Rwandan genocide almost 20 years ago, ” UN refugee chief, Antonio Guterres, said in a statement on Tuesday.
“This crisis has been going on for much longer than anyone feared with unbearable humanitarian consequences, ” the statement added.
During the Rwandan genocide, which occurred from April to July 1994, over two million Rwandans mainly Tutsis left their country to flee mass executions of Hutus. Nearly 1.8 million Syrians have been registered in countries around Syria. The number however excludes the Syrians who had been displaced inside their country. Guterres and the UN humanitarian chief, Valerie Amos, have appealed to the UN Security Council for international action in the face of the huge influx of Syrians escaping the violence. The largest numbers of refugees are sheltered in often squalid camps across Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq and Egypt. UN figures show that more than four million Syrians have been internally displaced since the beginning of the unrest more than two years ago. Syria crisis began in March 2011. Many people, including large numbers of Syrian soldiers and security forces, have been killed in the foreign-sponsored militancy. The Syrian government says the West and its regional allies - especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey - are supporting the militants.