Increasing figures of forced displacement are a tragic reality for humanity, Ombudswoman Maria Stylianou-Lottides said on Tuesday, in light of World Refugee Day.

She stressed the importance of more solidarity and sensitivity to people “that risk an unknown journey without return” as well as stronger efforts to integrate those who are forcibly displaced, into local communities and start a new life.

“For every ship that reaches its destination, there was one that sank, along with the hope that a smuggler drowned out.”

Lottides added figures did not decrease in 2023, as the conflict in Sudan has created more displacements, driving the figure up to 110 million in May.

These figures highlight the need that receiving countries are ready to provide the necessary support to those who need it.

The ombudswoman noted matters that concern rights of asylum seekers are a core part of her office. “Within this framework, there have been a number of interventions from me over these matters,” she said.

Visits are carried out at reception centers for asylum seekers and authorities have been notified, through reports, about matters that concern infrastructure and services available to those who need it.

Lottides also noted her office was closely monitoring and offering suggestions over the proper implementation of laws related to refugees, including the need to safeguard conditions of safety and dignity.

She cited the UNHCR as saying “the inclusion of refugees in the communities they have found safety in are the best way to help them start their life again and contribute to the countries that host them.”

The ongoing war in Ukraine, conflicts in a host of other countries, as well as the consequences of climate change, have led to an unprecedented number of people who have been displaced from their countries of origin, she added.