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The representatives of the Seimas Ombudsmen's Office commemorated Word Refugee Day in Rukla

19 June 2015

IMG 1490The representatives of the Seimas Ombudsmen's Office in collaboration with the head of the Seimas Committee on Human Rights Zita Žvikiene commemorated World Refugee Day in The Refugee Reception Centre on 19 June 2015. The United Nations' (UN) World Refugee Day is observed on June 20 each year.

“Implementing national prevention of torture, the Seimas Ombudsmen protect  human rights of all people who are in places of detention; however, this objective would be achieved with difficulty if institutions did not cooperate," said Juras Taminskas, the Adviser of Human Rights Division of the Seimas Ombudsmen’s Office to the audience at the event.

"World Refugee Day is a great opportunity to honour the courage, strength and determination of refugees seeking a better life without persecution, exploitation and massacre. It is time for us – the democratic state – to reaffirm our commitment to people fleeing war and continuing to believe that EU member state will protect them from violence,” said Zita Žvikienė, the head of Seimas Committee on Human rights.

Welcoming the audience, the representative of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Lithuania Renata Kuleš drew attention to lasting conflicts; to an increasing number of people forced to flee homes and a rising wave of xenophobia and intolerance in the world.

European migration network data revealed that third-country nationals lodged 496 applications for asylum in Lithuania; it is 24.3 per cent more than in 2013. The data suggests that 53.4 per cent of applications were submitted in border crossing points. Most of asylum seekers were from Georgia (117 applications), Afghanistan (99 applications) and Russia (74 applications). The number of asylum seekers from Ukraine has increased (there were 70 applications submitted in 2014 while only 5 received in 2013).

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