Last year was the worst ever for refugee numbers. The United Nations (U.N.) said that in 2015, 65.3 million people were forced to leave their home or country. This is up by five million from 59.5 million in 2014. The 2015 figure is a 50 per cent increase from five years ago. One in every 113 people on the planet is now either a refugee, an asylum seeker or displaced in their own country. The U.N. said: "Twenty-four people are displaced every minute [and] two-thirds of the forcibly displaced are refugees in their own country." It was World Refugee Day on June the 20th.
The biggest reason for the record number of refugees is war. Fighting in Syria, Afghanistan, Burundi and South Sudan has created the most refugees. Half of them are children. Over 98,000 asylum requests in 2015 were from unaccompanied children. This is the highest number ever seen. The U.N. said 90 per cent of refugees are from poor or middle income countries. The refugees are facing big problems at borders. These include fences in Europe, tougher immigration laws, and hate. The U.N. said the answer is, "political action to stop conflicts".