69,000 refugees have left Jordan for third country resettlement since 2014

(File photo: Jordan News)
AMMAN – On Sunday, the UNHCR in Jordan stated that about 69,000 refugees have left Jordan for a third country under the "resettlement" category since 2014, with 10,000 of them being resettled in 2023.اضافة اعلان

While estimates show that more than 10 percent of refugees want to be resettled, the actual number of refugees who are successfully resettled is less than 1 percent, Khaberni reported.

Given the limited prospects for return to Syria and long-term integration into Jordanian communities, the UNHCR prioritizes third-country solutions such as resettlement and other paths.

The UNHCR sees resettlement as an essential means for refugees to transition to another nation that will accept them, providing legal protection and permanent residence. It is a crucial means of sharing responsibilities and showing solidarity with host nations such as Jordan.

The UNHCR prioritizes refugees of all nationalities for resettlement depending on their protection requirements. Individuals who are often resettled are highly vulnerable, including those who require legal and physical protection, survivors of violence or torture, at-risk children and adolescents, and those with medical requirements.

It is worth mentioning that resettlement options are restricted and subject to quotas imposed by resettlement countries.

In addition to resettlement, there are various other options, such as “complementary pathways”, for refugees seeking third-country solutions, such as jobs, education, family reunification, and special medical care. These pathways provide secure and regulated options for refugees to legally stay in a third country while receiving international protection.

UNHCR's assistance over the years
Since 2020, the UNHCR has aided 1,500 refugees via these complementary pathways. However, this figure represents only a small proportion of the total number of refugees who have flown to third countries via various routes, as figures show that over 8,000 migrants departed Jordan over the stipulated period.

Over the last decade, many Jordanian refugees have benefited from educational programs and job prospects. These highly skilled refugees now work in high-demand industries such as information technology, healthcare, law, and engineering.

Despite their inability to work in these sectors in Jordan due to restrictions on foreign employment, they are strong candidates to benefit from employment pathways to third countries.

As for those who wish to return to Syria, the UNHCR does not actively encourage or facilitate their return to their home country. However, they continue to explore ways to support refugees who express a desire to return, monitoring developments that may contribute to future opportunities for voluntary and safe return with dignity. The UNHCR emphasizes that any return “must be voluntary and based on an informed and free decision.”

More than 52,000 Syrian refugees have chosen to return home since 2018, and an average of 500 refugees will cross the border each month between 2020 and 2023.

The UNHCR reiterates its commitment to providing restricted resettlement options for vulnerable refugees with critical protection requirements. They improve access to diverse channels and help refugees navigate the available solutions and opportunities.

Furthermore, the UNHCR will continue to provide correct and up-to-date information to refugees wishing to return to Syria, ensuring that all return procedures are voluntary, safe, and well-informed.

It is crucial to highlight that, according to the UNHCR website, "resettlement" is the process of relocating refugees from their place of asylum to another nation that chooses to accept them, allowing them long-term permanent status. 

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