Arab Spring causes jump in refugee numbers, highest in 11 years

On the eve of World Refugee Day (one of those PR gimmicks they started about 10 years ago) we learned that surprise! surprise! the Arab Spring is responsible for a dramatic increase in refugees worldwide.  Are you surprised?

From Reuters:

LONDON (AlertNet) – Post-election violence in Ivory Coast and the Arab Spring revolutions helped create 800,000 new refugees last year – the highest number in over a decade, according to the U.N. refugee agency’s annual report on global trends.

“2011 saw suffering on an epic scale. For so many lives to have been thrown into turmoil over so short a space of time means enormous personal cost for all who were affected,” said Antonio Guterres, head of the UNHCR agency.

In all, 4.3 million people were newly displaced last year due to conflict or persecution, according to the Global Trends 2011 report. Most were uprooted within their own countries.

Conflict in Ivory Coast, Libya, Somalia and Sudan were among crises that prompted large numbers to flee their homes.

Worldwide, 42.5 million people ended 2011 either as refugees (15.2 million), internally displaced within their country (26.4 million) or in the process of seeking asylum (895,000).

How’s that “responsibility to protect” rule for making war working for Samantha and the kids at the White House?