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Political, social, religious and economic factors among other factors have over the years influenced on movement of individuals from country to country. The 1951 Geneva Convention relating to the status of refugees provides guidelines under which individuals are liable to claim for asylum in foreign countries. A well founded fear of persecution due to religion, race, nationality, political opinion or membership of a particular group are some of the basis under which one can claim asylum in any country.

According to the United Nations High commission for Refugees (UNHCR), asylum seekers are individuals who have sought international protection and whose claim for refugee status have not yet been determined, irrespective of when they may have been lodged.

Trends on the number of asylum seekers in COMESA countries have over years been gradually reducing though a 21% rise was reported in 2016 from that in 2015. Most of the Member States in COMESA have an open policy that remains favorable for asylum seekers from all different corners around the world. Respect for the rule of law and human rights stands out for the continued claims of asylum with in some states.

However, it must be noted that certain countries with in the region have recorded a massive exit of people seeking asylum in neighboring countries.

The UNHCR trend report for 2014 showed that Uganda, Kenya  and Democratic Republic of Congo were among the top 10 world hosts to asylum seekers.

As a Regional economic Community (REC), how many asylum seekers have been recieved over the years? Explore the visualizations below and see the patterns.


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