A UNHCR worker talking to a woman
Syria. Distribution of non-food items to newly returned families in Hwair Al Aiss, in rural Aleppo district. In the past few months, families displaced from the village have started returning as security has improved. 
© UNHCR/Hameed Maarouf
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Japan is one of UNHCR’s most prominent partners and thanks to the strong commitment of the people of Japan, UNHCR is providing vital humanitarian assistance and protection to refugees and other displaced people around the world.

Japan’s support for important global initiatives such as the Sustainable Development Goals, the Human Security and the humanitarian-development-peace nexus, highlight Japan as a key partner on displacement issues.

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The partnership with Japan is steeped in history. Having joined the Executive Committee for UNHCR in 1979, Japan ever since remains an important supporter of UNHCR both politically and financially. In addition, the visionary leadership of former UN High Commissioner for Refugees Sadako Ogata, who led UNHCR from 1991 to 2000, played a pivotal role in guiding UNHCR through one of its most momentous decades.Japan’s financial support to UNHCR has allowed for an effective and efficient response throughout the years to address acute humanitarian needs, both in emergencies and in protracted situations. Japan was one of the first donors to step up in the COVID-19 response (2020) and the Ukraine emergency (2022) and will remain a major partner in response to future crises. Japan’s dedication to the refugee cause can also be seen in the commitment of Japan to the Junior Professional Officer (JPO) programme.

Japan has actively promoted the humanitarian-development-peace nexus as a solution for today’s complex humanitarian crises, providing funding support to both UNHCR’s humanitarian projects as well as development projects by among the Japanese development agency, JICA. Japan is also a major driving force of the whole-of-society approach and the enhanced roles of host countries and communities under the Global Compact on Refugees. Against this backdrop, Japan has become one of the co-convenors for GRF in 2023.

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