Brazil hosts regional summit on refugees in LatAm

Source: Xinhua| 2018-02-20 08:00:51|Editor: Liu
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RIO DE JANEIRO, Feb. 19 (Xinhua) -- Representatives from 36 countries are meeting in Brasilia from Monday to seek a solution to refugee issues in Latin America and the Caribbean.

The summit includes an evaluation of how refugees are received and protected, and finding new ways to help them.

Organized by the Brazilian government and the UN High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR), the meeting is being held at the Itamaraty Palace, home to the foreign ministry.

The summit is expected to see the signature of an agreement about the setting up of the Brazilian office of the UNHCR.

The meeting is also to review Brazil's Action Plan for refugees, approved by regional countries in 2014 about how to provide assistance to refugees and stateless people. It guarantees that the region will welcome refugees, especially poorer ones, and provide them with help to establish and build new lives.

The UNHCR will also discuss the Global Compact for Refugees, which is set to be approved at the UN General Assembly in Sept. 2018.

Speaking at the meeting, UNHCR High Commissioner Filippo Grandi called on "those States who have not yet done so, to accede to the refugee and statelessness instruments, and to move forward with extending pragmatic protection responses to those in need."

Grandi also congratulated Latin America and the Caribbean for "innovative" practices in handling refugees, such as humanitarian visas.

The UNHCR estimates that the region is home to 16 percent of the 65 million refugees worldwide.