Islamic Republic of Iran
Operation: Islamic Republic of Iran
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|2018 year-end results|
|498,000||children, out of which 103,000 are undocumented children, were enrolled in public primary and secondary schools|
|92,000||vulnerable refugees were enrolled in the Universal Public Health Insurance scheme and benefited from universal health coverage|
|10,350||people with specific needs received support|
|2,400||over-aged students (children and adult refugees) benefitted from literacy classes|
|21||community-based projects were implemented/initiated|
|8||schools for refugee and host community children were constructed|
|2019 planning figures|
|95%||of people of concern have access to secondary and tertiary health care|
|1,000||people of concern will be facilitated for their departure for resettlement|
|805||Afghan refugees will be provided with entrepreneurship/ business training|
|25||schools will be built to enhance the capacity of the national education system and facilitate the access of additional 9,000 refugee and host community children to education|
|20||projects benefiting local and displaced communities will be implemented to enhance community engagement and resilience|
People of Concern
Islamic Republic of Iran
The Islamic Republic of Iran hosts one of the largest and most protracted urban refugee populations in the world - 951,142 Afghan refugees and 28,268 Iraqi refugees with 97% of them living in urban and rural areas while the remaining 3% residing in 21 settlements managed by the Bureau for Aliens and Foreign Immigrants Affairs (BAFIA).
Iran is going through a challenging economic period with sharply reducing perspectives for growth as a result of the evolving international environment linked to the country and the region in general. This situation poses further strain on national resources as well as on refugees and their host communities, presenting a number of challenges for the country. UNHCR will continue its work with the Government to develop and apply a strategic approach to engage the international community and apply a whole-of-society approach, as outlined in the Global Compact on Refugees. Some international players have shown interest in supporting humanitarian and other activities which are not directly affected by restrictions applied to the country.
Despite the prevailing economic situation, Iran is committed to continue with a number of inclusive refugee policies that were introduced in recent years; facilitating access for all foreign children residing in Iran to enroll in public schools, access for all refugees to enroll in the national Universal Primary Health Insurance (UPHI), and access to legally engage in livelihoods opportunities through attaining temporary work permits. UNHCR and partners will support the Government in its commendable efforts and will target programmes towards enhancement of national systems and to support implementation of those inclusive and progressive policies.
The main interventions for 2020-2021 aim at supporting the Government to continue to provide more sustainable access to quality national services in particular health and education, greater opportunities for self-reliance including through financial and economic inclusion, enhanced access to social safety nets for vulnerable refugees and enhanced harm prevention and response mechanism, while seeking durable solutions.
- Protection activities will include promotion of access to asylum, registration and documentation, protection against refoulement, will further focus on civil documentation as a prevention for statelessness, alternative dispute resolution and legal support, applying and further enhancing a community based approach. The latter will focus on engaging directly with communities and supporting initiatives aiming at peaceful co-existence and social cohesion with host communities.
- Durable solutions will be pursued through facilitating voluntary repatriation for those who opt for return, and efforts will be made to increase resettlement quota, while promoting and facilitating complementary pathways for third country solution, particular in relation to family reunification.
- Support refugees’ access to national health services, in particular UPHI will continue in 2020. The Government and national institutions continue to need support in view of their significant investment to open the access of the health insurance to all refugees.
- In the area of education, UNHCR will continue to support the efforts of the Government to further open quality access of schools to refugees by constructing schools in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, in areas where critical needs will be identified.
- In the area of livelihoods, UNHCR, jointly with the Government, plans to further expand access to diversified livelihoods opportunities for refugees. There has been gradual openings by the Government which has confirmed its commitment to seek greater self-reliance and livelihoods opportunities for the refugees