UN High Commissioner for Refugees in Berlin

Germany is actively engaged

Chancellor Angela Merkel has welcomed the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, to the Federal Chancellery for talks. One main point discussed was the implementation of the Global Compact on Refugees.

Chancellor Angela Merkel and UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi walk along a corridor in the Federal Chancellery. Behind them are the German, EU and UN flags and a painting on the wall.

UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi visited Angela Merkel at the Federal Chancellery

Photo: Bundesregierung / Denzel

Before their meeting, Chancellor Angela Merkel and UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi met the press. Chancellor Angela Merkel reaffirmed that the challenges in the field of displacement and expulsion "are still enormous" as can be seen, for instance, in Libya and Sudan. The importance of UNHCR, with which Germany cooperates closely, is again increasing.

With a view to the Global Compact on Refugees the Chancellor said, "I think it was a huge success that the Global Compact on Refugees was adopted last year with an overwhelming majority." This is a sign that the United Nations has accepted "that displacement and expulsion are global international responsibilities and that they can only be mastered by working together". In this context, she expressly thanked the UNHCR for the assistance it has provided for Syrian refugees in Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon, and those who are displaced inside Syria.

The duties of UNHCR

The United Nations General Assembly mandated the UN High Commissioner for Refugees to provide protection for refugees around the world. Since it was founded in 1950, UNHCR has worked to find lasting solutions for the situation of refugees.

The most important international agreement providing protection for refugees is the 1951 Geneva Convention relating to the Status of Refugees and the additional 1967 Protocol. The convention specifies who is a refugee and what legal protection refugees are to be granted by the signatory states. Regional agreements extend the definition of a refugee to cover individuals fleeing war and unrest, within their own field of application.

At the end of 2018 a new framework was adopted for global refugee protection, the Global Compact on Refugees. Parallel to this, the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration was also signed.


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