PARIS – Lined up before dawn, dozens of immigrants in front of a government office in Italy rubbed shoulders to be one of the few insiders who applied for asylum on Wednesday.
The trips that brought them to Rome and the sleepless nights wonder if their stay would be repeated in cities and countries around the world on World Refugee Day while millions of people sought to flee from persecution, violence, war and poverty.
The Rohingya Muslims expelled from Myanmar to Bangladesh; teenagers from Mexico and Central America seeking safety in the United States; Refugees of war of Syria; men from South Sudan and Nigeria who cross the Mediterranean Sea to feed their families; They are among the human wave that strikes all the continents.
"The international community must work with shared and long-term political options to manage a phenomenon that involves the whole world," Italian President Sergio Mattarella, whose country is on the receiving end of immigration from Europe, said in a message of World Refugee Day.
While migration to the 35 richest countries in the world fell slightly last year for the first time since 2011, asylum applications increased by 26 percent in the United States, according to a new report from the Organization for Cooperation and Economic Development, which represents the rich nations.
Meanwhile, the UN refugee agency reported this week that nearly 69 million people were forcibly displaced in 2017, a record for the fifth year in a row.
The Secretary General of the OECD, Angel Gurria, insisted that since migration is here to stay, countries should work to integrate the newcomers and prepare their native populations to receive foreigners instead of resenting them. .
He noted that while "fears about the impact of refugees on jobs in OECD countries with the facts," young men with limited education in places like Germany and Austria could be disproportionately affected by a Extended work and deserve attention and training.
"The absence of politics is what is creating this cacophony," said Gurria. .
In a sign of continued divisions, Hungary marked World Refugee Day by approving measures that make it difficult to obtain asylum and threaten a prison sentence for those who help asylum seekers.
In the United States, the Trump administration said that "new actors" must step up in the global response to refugees. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's statement did not mention the forced separation by the administration of Latino children from their migrant parents. The United States reversed that policy on Wednesday, although already separated families have not yet met.
In Europe, the leaders of the member countries of the European Union try again to find solutions for a massive migratory crisis that has confronted nations and politicians against each other.
Interior Minister in the new populist government of Italy, Matteo Salvini, rejected a port of entry this month to a rescue boat operated by two aid groups carrying 630 people who were arrested while trying to cross the Mediterranean Sea from Libya.
Italy has been the place of arrival of the bulk of migrants trying to cross the dangerous sea for various reasons, as seen in the discouraged line in front of the immigration office in Rome. Salvini is pressing other EU members to share the burden.
Pope Francis urged people not to "let fear interfere with welcoming our needy neighbor."
Migrants and refugees who were swept from the streets of Paris in recent weeks now occupy a gymnasium, all of them wishing they were somewhere else on Wednesday.
Nasir Ahmad, an Afghan living in the gym in Paris, spent a year in Germany and then two years waiting for the documents he needed to make France his home. Now, Ahmad has refugee status, but I do not work.
"I have good energy, I have a lot of energy to do for work, but nobody used me," he said. "Nothing has changed, only I changed, I become old."
German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who faces constant criticism and growing pressure for her decision to open Germany to refugees last year, said that how to handle the large number of people fleeing violence and persecution is " a matter of our time. "
Some 700,000 Rohingya fled the brutal attacks of government forces and crowds last year in Myanmar, crossing the border into makeshift refugee camps full of people in Bangladesh. The monsoon rains have begun to sweep the fields, often leaving the refugees fording rivers of mud and water.
In the Kutupalong refugee camp on the outskirts of the Cox Bazaar, Bangladesh, more than 100 Rohingyas marched on Wednesday to highlight their suffering, demanding international organizations hold the Myanmar government responsible for the attacks that drove them into exile.
Many wore t-shirts and paper hats proclaiming that they were not "Bengali". In Myanmar, the Rohingya are often ridiculed as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.  Abdu Shukkur, a 44-year-old refugee, denounced the Myanmar government for refusing to recognize the Rohingya as an ethnic minority and for denying them "the right to citizenship and its privileges."
In Lebanon, Syrian refugees have begun to build lives in similar camps intended to be temporary transit stations. Turkey remains the country with the largest number of Syrian refugees, but small Lebanon has the highest concentration of refugees per capita in the world.
Em Mohammed, a Syrian refugee from Idlib, supports his three sons working as tailors in Lebanon.
"I will not return because here there is assistance, there are many camps, I can sew and I can support myself," he said. "There (in Syria), there are no camps, there are no people and they do not have money to buy, they do not even have places to sleep there."
Barry reported from Rome. Jeffrey Schaeffer in Paris also contributed.
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