The new cap for refugee admissions to the U.S. is about 50,000 per year.

A new report published by Pew Research Center from data released by United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) on July 5 showed for the first time in history, refugee numbers resettled in the United States have decreased more than any other nation . It was the first time the U.S. had settled less than a combined total of remaining world nations from the time the U.S. Refugee Act came into force in 1980. The law permits the U.S. President to set limits on numbers of refugees setting foot on American soil.

For the First Time, U.S. Takes in Lowest Number of Refugees Compared to Other Countries

The Trump administration has lowered the U.S. refugee cap to about 50,000 via an executive order stopping arrivals from a few Muslim majority nations. The first iteration of the order temporarily froze the resettlements of refugees. Justifying the new measures, Kirstjen Nielsen, the Homeland Security Secretary, said the extra security measures makes it near impossible to exploit the refugee program. The present policy takes a more risk-centric approach to protect the U.S.

In 2017, about 33,000 refugees were resettled by the U.S. This is the nation's lowest when compared with other years after 9/11. Other nations in total resettled 69,000 refugees. It should be mentioned refugee resettlement within those countries also dipped from 2016 numbers amounting to about 92,000 individuals.

In contrast, the Obama administration resettled approximately 97,000 refugees. This is significant as the U.S. has led other countries when it comes to refugee resettlement. The North American nation has opened its doors to about 3 million of the total 4 million refugees settled all over the world since 1980.

Only in 2003 did other countries come close to matching America’s historically high numbers. The U.S. settled 28,000 refugees as compared to 27,000 refugees resettled by the rest. Even though there has been a noticeable decline in resettling refugees, the United States continues to take the maximum number of refugees (33,000) compared to any other single nation. Canada comes second when it comes to accepting refugees. It took 27,000 individuals. Australia comes third with 15,000 people, and the UK comes fourth with 6,000 refugees. Three European countries-Sweden, France, and Norway each took in approximately 3,000 people. On an empirical level, the world witnessed a resettlement of about 103,000 refugees during 2017. It is a climb down from about 189,000 in 2016.


Follow the Conversation on Twitter