Turkey became the 17th member in the Vienna-based International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD), according to a Foreign Ministry statement released yesterday.
In a statement, the ministry said: "As the host of the largest refugee population in the world with 3.5 million Syrians and also as the most generous country with regard to humanitarian aid, membership to the ICMPD will enable Turkey to provide a concrete and comprehensive contribution to the work of the Organization."
The ICMPD aims to promote innovative, comprehensive and sustainable migration policies and to enhance cooperation in the field of migration, the statement said. The center is also the Secretariat of the Budapest Process, one of the most important platforms gathering countries of origin and destination that has been chaired by Turkey since 2006. The ICMPD also holds U.N. observer status.
According to United Nations figures, Turkey currently hosts the highest number of refugees in the world with 3.9 million people, including 3.5 million Syrians.
Syria has been locked in a devastating conflict since early 2011, when the regime cracked down on demonstrators with unexpected ferocity, which has caused millions of people to be internally and internationally displaced.
Out of the nearly 4 million refugees in Turkey, 30,000 refugees live in camps located in the southeast, while the majority live in cities and towns across the country.