The Current State Of The Migrant Community
There are a number of reasons why people choose to move from a particular country from which they originate to a new country. The factors that cause people to emigrate can be categorized into push factors and pull factors. Push factors are those reasons that make people leave a particular area. These includes; drought, poverty, war, high crime rates and lack of services. Pull factors on the other hand are those reasons that motivate a person to move to a particular country. These factors include; better opportunities, higher quality of life, better services, political stability, good climate, less crime and better crop yields. It is thanks to a combination of these pull and push factors that migration usually occurs and has brought about the existence of the migrant community.
Though there are a number of people who have the choice of moving permanently to a new place, there is also another group of people that are forced to migrate. This is especially the case in areas affected by war or famine. It is at this point that refugees come into perspective. A refugee according to the United Nations is “anyone who flees their home country due to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion.” Refugees account for the largest migrant community in the world.
Top 5 Migrant Communities In the world
The history of Palestinian refugees dates back to the 1948 Palestine war where 700,000 Arabs fled their areas of residence. Other than this, the Six day war of 1967 by Israel where over 280,000 Palestinians fled. Another mass exodus by Palestinians was during and after the Gulf war. It is thanks to the turmoil in the region that there are 4.8 million Palestinian refugees.
There are about 2.9 million Afghan refugees in the world today. This is the second largest number of refugees after the Palestinians. There are four main waves that contributed to the fleeing of refugees i.e. both legal and illegal and they include:
The Soviet war in Afghanistan (1978 – 89)
The Civil War (1992 – 96)
The Taliban Rule (1996 – 2001)
The Afghanistan war (2001 and still ongoing)
With over 1.8 million refugees, Iraqi refugees account for the third largest refugee population. This number has been gradually growing over the last thirty years. This can be traced back from the Iran – Iraq war, the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait and the first Gulf War which generated hundreds of thousands of refugees.
Fourth on the list are the Somali refugees who are around 700,000 in number. Just like the above mentioned refugees, the Somali refugees have also been largely generated by civil strife and war.
There are over 450,000 Congolese refugees today. The biggest contributor to this sad state of affairs is like in the above instances war.
With the above, it is quite clear to see that war is never the solution. Though this is the case, a lot of harm has already been done and it is only best that we can help undo the pain that the migrant community lives with is by helping in any way possible.