Close to 4 million refugees Turkey continues to be home to the world’s largest refugee population.
Key locations Almost 50 percent of all refugees in Turkey are registered in four key provinces: Gaziantep, Hatay, Istanbul and Sanliurfa.
Youth refugees Approximately one million refugees in Turkey are aged between 15 and 24, of which 60 percent are male.
Working with Partners and Public Institutions
The Government leads the refugee response in Turkey with UNHCR providing direct operational support, capacity development and technical advice to the authorities. UNHCR programmes in Turkey are implemented through various partnerships, including supporting public institutions at the national and local levels (5), and working with international (4) and national NGOs (10), UN sister agencies (3) but also directly using private service providers to ensure a coordinated, holistic approach to meeting the needs of asylum-seekers and refugees.
As the Refugee Agency, UNHCR coordinates the efforts of UN agencies and partners to support Turkey’s refugee response and avoid duplication and gaps in international assistance. In this role, UNHCR co-leads the Regional Refugee Resilience and Response Plan (3RP) for the Syria crisis with UNDP and leads the International Protection and Migration Pillar of the Turkey 2016-2020 UN Development and Cooperation Strategy (UNDCS).
UNHCR supports the development and implementation of the national refugee response strategy. Turkey’s asylum framework provides a broad range of rights and entitlements including access to education, health care and social services for asylum-seekers and refugees. While refugees and asylum-seekers enjoy increased access to services provided through the public systems, the capacity of the existing infrastructure and personnel, including in hospitals and schools, is stretched. Support from the international community and development partners is required for the successful inclusion of refugees and asylum-seekers into national structures.
UNHCR advocates for refugees’ and asylum-seekers’ effective access to their rights through their increased inclusion in existing state systems, and in its role in coordinating the humanitarian community, encourages 3RP and other partners to continue support of the national systems.