Press Releases

PRESS RELEASE : Global Refugee Forum 2023 – UK statement [December 2023]

The press release issued by the Foreign Office on 20 December 2023.

The UK’s Permanent Representative to the WTO and UN in Geneva, Simon Manley, delivered the United Kingdom’s statement on 14 December 2023 at the Global Refugee Forum.

High Commissioner. Excellencies. Ladies and gentlemen.

We are living in a time of unprecedented international challenges, with global displacement at extraordinary levels and rising.

In recent years, we have seen countries rally around to support the growing number of refugees around the world. Conflict, pandemics, and climate change have had an enduring impact on us.

But as the challenges increase, so must our efforts.

I want to acknowledge the continued generosity and leadership of host nations and communities. You all play a vital role in providing sanctuary to forcibly displaced people.

Without your leadership, they would be forced to go on dangerous journeys, risking their lives and exploitation from the most vicious people traffickers.

We emphatically believe the Global Compact on Refugees is the best strategy to support refugees and their host communities.

It plays a fundamental part in ensuring the international protection regime is fit for the 21st century. And that it protects the most vulnerable in our communities, including women and girls, the LGBT+ community and those with disabilities.

Since 2015, the UK has provided international protection to over half a million people.

Globally, we are among the top five donors to refugee responses. But we know that is not enough. We need to do more, much more.

The UK has fulfilled each of the pledges that we made back here in 2019. Today, we are going further and making 15 pledges to tackle a whole range of issues such as:

  • Improving access to education;
  • Tackling gender-based violence;
  • Supporting the Rohingya and their host communities;
  • Harnessing Artificial Intelligence to predict and prevent conflicts and crises;
  • Building resilience of refugee and host communities to climate impacts;
  • and providing sustained support to refugees who settle in the UK.

Thank you.