Globalization and the Refugee Crisis
Richmond, Anthony H.
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Various aspects of globalization are reviewed. It is noted that money and goods move freely but people may not. A distinction is made between proactive and reactive migrants, recognizing that this is a continuum not a dichotomy. The global system is characterized by extreme inequality, as measured by GDP per head, and by the Human Development Index. The majority of armed conflicts occur in poorest countries, which are also the source of most political refugees. Environmental crises also precipitate population displacement. Developing countries carry the main burden of refugee protection. Asylum seekers in industrialized regions are a small proportion of those needing protection world-wide. It is concluded that the global refugee crisis will only be solved, in the long-run, by reducing inequality, and addressing the question of global disarmament.