Countries in northern central America are experiencing high levels of violence, compounded by growing social and economic instability. This results in large movements of internally displaced people, refugees, migrants and returnees across the entire region.
Over the past decade, the region has witnessed a dramatic increase in the number of people fleeing violence and in search of international protection across borders, or to begin new lives away from violence within their own countries. Based on data from the end of 2019, around 790,000 people from northern central America are asylum seekers, refugees or internally displaced.
Since April 2018, the social and political crisis in Nicaragua has driven thousands of people to flee violence, persecution and human rights violations, the majority towards Costa Rica. Two years into the crisis, over 100,000 Nicaraguans have fled their country in search of safety.
Central and North America have been affected either as countries of origin, transit, destination or return, and in some cases, a combination of these factors. Despite the many efforts made to address the root causes of forced displacement, the new dynamics of violence in these countries indicate that more people will be forced to flee their communities in the coming years.
Find live data about Persons of Concern in the region: https://data2.unhcr.org/es/situations/cam
Through the 2014 Brazil Plan of Action and the 2016 San Jose Action Statement, States have committed to addressing the various dimensions of the situation, through prevention and tackling the underlying causes of displacement, strengthening protection within countries of origin and improving the international protection of asylum seekers and refugees. This endeavor requires a combination of humanitarian interventions, as well as those of development, macroeconomy and support.
In line with the 2016 New York Declaration on Refugees and Migrants and its Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF), states in the region have been developing a regional application of the CRRF, known as the Comprehensive Regional Protection and Solutions Framework (MIRPS) for the Americas. Based on principles of solidarity and responsibility-sharing, the MIRPS is a mechanism through which States implement a series of relevant commitments. At the same time, they identify and address gaps through comprehensive responses that involve a wide range of interested parties and mobilize resources for implementation.
Belize, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico and Panama adopted the San Pedro Sula Declaration in 2017, agreeing to work together in the implementation of the Regional Comprehensive Protection and Solutions Framework (MIRPS). El Salvador joined the process in July 2019.
The MIRPS is a pioneering initiative in the application of the Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF) and a concrete contribution to the Global Compact on Refugees (GCR). The MIRPS encourages regional cooperation between countries of origin, transit and destination, to foster responsibility-sharing on matters related to prevention, protection and durable solutions. It also embodies a participatory approach by involving people in need of international protection and those affected by violence and insecurity.