Egypt hosts refugees and asylum-seekers from 57 countries of origin. The majority live in urban areas alongside host communities.
Currently, 258,882 refugees and asylum-seekers are registered with UNHCR Egypt. Half of them are from Syria.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, UNHCR has adapted its activities to the changing circumstances, continuing to provide critical assistance and protection support.
COVID-19 in Egypt
The majority of refugees and asylum-seekers in Egypt were already highly vulnerable prior to the outbreak of COVID-19, and have been further impacted by the evolving circumstances. Many have lost their source of income and reportedly cannot afford sufficient basic supplies or pay their rent. Unaccompanied and separated children are becoming increasingly vulnerable, and cases of gender-based violence (GBV) continue to be reported. Elderly people and persons with special needs and medical conditions are among the most affected groups during the pandemic.
UNHCR Egypt maintained its essential services since the beginning of the pandemic. By the end of August, all activities have resumed with adapted modalities and precautionary measures in place.
UNHCR Egypt has strengthened and adapted its communication with refugees and asylum-seekers through various channels, including phone, e-mail, social media, and messaging services. UNHCR’s info-line continues to operate, and emergency contact lines have been established with partners to ensure 24-hour service.
From mid-March to end of November, UNHCR responded to over 139,000 calls to its info-line and registration hotline.