World Refugee Day being marked today

KATHMANDU: The World Refugee Day 2018 is being marked in the country today, to celebrate the resilient spirit of refugees.

Every two seconds, one person was forced to flee their homes due to persecution, human rights violation and war in 2017. The numbers of forced displacement represent countless stories of human suffering and loss, but also the courage and resilience of millions of refugees who have overcome adversity and now contribute to the nations which gave them asylum.

As stated by UNHCR in a press release today, it is in this spirit that the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), its partners and people of Nepal across the country are celebrating World Refugee Day by standing together with refugees.

“Solving refugee problem needs a collective effort. The Government and people of Nepal have shown tremendous generosity, compassion and solidarity in hosting refugees for decades,” said Bushra Halepota, UNHCR Representative in Nepal.

To celebrate the life of refugees and express solidarity towards them, the historic Ghantaghar (Clock Tower) in Kathmandu will be illuminated in blue for two days.

Nepal exemplifies shared responsibilities in finding solutions for refugees with almost 115,000 refugees from Bhutan resettled in other countries, with substantial support from the Government of Nepal and the international community. Those refugees who remain, continue to contribute to Nepali society and further enrich the cultural, social and economic fabric of the country.

In Damak, Bhutanese refugees and local residents stood together on this day to celebrate shared bonds they have developed over the past two decades. On the very occasion, refugees and local youths held a friendly football match and showcased their talents and skills in various spheres including handicrafts, art and culture, the press release further shares.

In the spirit of “Leaving No One Behind," local authorities, refugee leaders and members of civil society participated in the programme, honouring the richness and diversity refugees bring to the society, whilst sharing their hopes and aspirations for a better future for all.