Turkey + 1 more

UNHCR Turkey Operational Update, May 2021 [EN/TR]


Key Figures (as of 31 May 2021)

4 million

Refugees and asylum-seekers in Turkey including over 3.6 million Syrians under temporary protection and over 330,000 international protection status holders and asylum-seekers of other nationalities. Over 98% of Syrian refugees live across Turkey in 81 provinces, while 1.6% are hosted in seven temporary accommodation centres managed by DGMM.


Refugees have departed for resettlement to 11 countries in 2021 so far. UNHCR provided over 800 submissions for resettlement consideration in May despite the full lockdown period from 29 April to 17 May when no resettlement interviews took place.


Calls answered on the UNHCR Counselling Line in May with the majority of calls enquiring about resettlement opportunities followed by financial assistance. Among those were 1,300 calls on UNHCR’s dedicated GBV line.


The opening ceremony of the project “Supporting Removal Centres' Capacities and Fostering Alternatives to Administrative Detention”, funded by the European Union and which will be implemented by UNHCR and IOM for a 36-month period, took place on 31 May. Representatives from various ministries, public institutions, foreign representations of European countries, international organizations, civil society organizations and academia took part in the opening. Opening remarks were delivered by the Deputy Minister of Interior, the Director General of Migration Management, the Director General of Financial Cooperation and Project Implementation under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Head of Delegation of the European Union, IOM Chief of Mission and UNHCR Turkey Representative. The speakers all expressed positive regard for the long- standing cooperation in the area of migration management and international protection in Turkey, and the dedicated work and support of all institutions and organizations involved.

The speeches were followed by brief presentations on the Removal Centre Project and activities to be implemented jointly by UNHCR and IOM. The launch of the second phase of the project, “Supporting DGMM in the Management, Reception and Hosting of Irregular Migrants” implemented by DGMM with funding from the European Union also took place on that day. The two projects aim to strengthen the institutional, technical and operational capacities of the removal centres to provide improved services to persons under administrative detention.