About 70% of the almost 68 million refugees in the world hail from five countries - Syria, Afghanistan, South Sudan, Myanmar and Somalia. Last year alone three countries took in more than half of all new refugees - Turkey, Uganda and Bangladesh.
A report from the Development Initiative showed Turkey as the most charitable country in the world with 30% of all international aid - approximately $27 billion coming from its coffers. The country’s humanitarian expenditure is nearly 1% of its GDP for 2017. It ranked third in 2013, 2014 and 2015 and then second on the list on 2016 with almost $6.3 million spent in aid.
Turkey also hosts the highest number of refugees in the world, a whopping 3.9 million with approximately 3.6 million alone from Syria as of May.
Whilst fighting to maintain its own economic growth after many years of economic mismanagement, Turkey has plans to further increase its humanitarian aid to the world. Under the leadership of the AK Party the countries aid agencies have risen to prominence for aid in disasters and assistance to refugees.
The World Humanitarian Summit, a first-of-its-kind summit by the UN to coordinate humanitarian efforts was hosted by Turkey whilst state-run Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA) oversees projects such as construction of hospitals to vocational training for the disadvantaged globally.
The Turkish Red Crescent also raised its profile within the international community with its involvement in humanitarian efforts from setting up camps to delivering food parcels in conflict zones and disaster hit areas of the world.
With the theme for World Refugee Day being “Now more than ever, we need to stand with refugees”, Turkey has certainly raised the banner high.