The Refugee Crisis

From across sub-Saharan Africa, thousands of refugees, cross-border migrants and asylum seekers flee to South Africa for safety and the hope of a better life. 

UNHCR reports that in late 2015, around 16 million people in Africa were either displaced or forced to flee to other countries. Of this, about 10.7 million were internally displaced persons (IDPs) and the remaining 5.2 million were forced to flee their home countries. The vast majority of these refugees, roughly 4.4 million, sought refuge in neighbouring African countries.

Today, data from UNHCR and Department of Home Affairs suggest that there are almost 400,000 pending asylum applications in South Africa, and the 2016 Community Survey reports that over 1.6 million foreign-born migrants are currently living in the country.

To find out more about where refugees and asylum seekers in South Africa are coming from, and why they have fled their homes, click on the map below.