76+ Best Refugee Quotes: Exclusive Selection

Profoundly inspirational refugee quotes will challenge the way you think, change the way you live and transform your whole life.

Famous Refugee Quotes

It’s a matter of priorities for the international community. What could be more obvious than refugee camps? — David Stevenson

Nothing but physical impossibility, lack of space and money would make me close my doors to Allied refugees. — Edith Cavell

Photographer James Nachtwey has spent his professional life in the places people most want to avoid: war zones and refugee camps, the city flattened by an earthquake, the village swallowed by a flood, the farm hollowed out by famine. — Nancy Gibbs

It is unacceptable that people who are able to pay a people-smuggler and make their way through several countries where they may avail themselves of protection, are getting a more favorable outcome than people languishing in the most appalling circumstances in refugee camps around the world, — Philip Ruddock

It was a faith-based group that brought him to this country as a refugee from Cuba and sent him on a path toward the American dream, — John Adams

If they think they have some immunity in the refugee camps, they are mistaken and we’ve proved it, — Ephraim Sneh

The idea of a long-term refugee camp is unacceptable (for the evacuees and Harris County residents), — Bill White

We reminded the government of Chad that it has the primary responsibility for ensuring the security of refugee camps on its territory. — Ron Redmond

We are confident that the Bahamians will carefully consider any claims for protection consistent with international standards and ensure that no bona fide refugee is returned to Cuba. — James Foley

The Loyal Refugee Volunteers were not members of the regular British Army. Their job was to cut wood for the British, who would pay them for it. To supplement that wood income, they raided into the Bergen County countryside to take horses and cattle, which they then would sell. — Todd Braisted

We were the only westerners in our neighbourhood, … Our goal was to cover the realities of the occupation on the ground and we had not got the same security concerns as, say, CNN. Maybe at some levels they don’t trust Iraqis with their security. There’s a part in the book where I’m trying to take CNN to a refugee camp, and they wouldn’t go. And so no one sees Falluja refugees. — David Enders

There are so many orgizations that do amazing work. I represent not only my own foundation, but the UN Refugee Agency, which has been around since 1951, and has helped 30 million refugees around the world. — Khaled Hosseini

It’s clear that the brutal tactics of the security forces left families separated and vital documents such as refugee cards destroyed or missing. — Bill Frelick

The hot spots studied in this paper are essentially refugee camps for many of our planet’s most unique plant and animal species. If those areas are no longer habitable due to global warming then we will quite literally be destroying the last sanctuaries many of these species have left. — Lee Hannah

These Tibetan refugee girls are both from India and from overseas. The beauty pageant will take place in the first week of October. — Lobsang Wangyal

We cannot hold onto Gaza forever, more than a million Palestinians live there…crowded in refugee camps, poverty and hotbeds of hatred with no hope on the horizon, — Ariel Sharon

My father, a refugee from Eastern Europe, was preparing a fraudulent marriage to an American citizen as a route to this country when he was sponsored, making fraud unnecessary. My wife’s grandfather bought papers from another Chinese villager to be able to come to the United States. — Nicholas Kristof

This is the reason why we have refugee hearings in private, precisely because we want to protect that information. — Monte Solberg

If there are more and more environmental refugees, they are going to end up on your doorstep too. — Nina Fedoroff

This is the first case in some time where people are staying in the open. And it has brought the refugee problem to the doorstep of Macedonia for the first time. — Kris Janowski

I think I’m still chewing on my years as a foreign correspondent. I found myself covering catastrophes – war, uprising, famine, refugee crises – and witnessing how people were affected by dire situations. When I find a story from the past, I bring some of those lessons to bear on the narrative. — Geraldine Brooks

People have to know that just because the refugee has landed in a new job, they’re not necessarily safe, … It’s about building resilience, holding your boundaries, not giving 80-100 hours a week to the job and not losing your identity to the job. — Ruth Luban

We are worried about this because it’s not a good time to start relations with Israel. The right time for this relationship with Israel is after Israel withdraws from all land occupied in 1967 and solves the refugee issue. — Nabil Sha’ath

From a global perspective, refugee is a neutral term. — Ron Redmond

We don’t have a refugee crisis in America; we have a racism crisis here. — Phyllis Bennis

If I’m doing a story on how a single mother copes in a refugee camp, I’ll go to her tent; I’ll follow her when she’s working, see what her daily life is like, and try to pack that into one composition, with nice light, in one frame. — Lynsey Addario

Widespread, quite possibly endemic and which also included people who were actually in place to provide those refugee children with the care and protection they were entitled to. — Paul Nolan

Believe me, the pain I feel with this act is the full realization that we must do it, … We cannot hold onto Gaza forever, more than a million Palestinians live there… crowded in refugee camps, poverty and hotbeds of hatred with no hope on the horizon. — Ariel Sharon

Educate yourself, learn about what refugees face when they don’t have homes, after they have lost everything. — Khaled Hosseini

So when I say that I am a refugee, you must understand that there is no refuge. — Chris Cleave

The WFP has nothing in its pipeline that would allow us to feed this refugee population beyond the end of this month. — Simon Pluess

We are particularly worried about the health of the refugee population, domestic violence and refugees resorting to illegal employment or even to prostitution, just to put enough food on the table, … When food becomes scarce, refugees often turn to desperate measures to feed themselves and their families. — Antonio Guterres

These are things coming from reporters who have not only covered many, many other hurricanes, they’ve covered wars and refugee camps. These aren’t rumours – they are saying there are thousands of people there. — Robert Siegel

They must be treated lawfully under the refugee convention. — John Dowd

Safety concerns are reasonable. Banning refugees is certainly not. — Lawrence O’Donnell

The dome is a shelter. It’s not a home. We don’t want it to turn into a refugee camp. — Robert Eckels

Every time someone who arrives illegally in Australia is granted refugee status, it means that a place is denied to someone often in more dire circumstances, — Philip Ruddock

The libraries will include the latest nursing/health information and provide training to better meet refugee health needs. — Ron Redmond

That was not part of the U.N. resolution; it was not part of the mandate to go on to Baghdad and, frankly, if we had gone into Baghdad and pushed Saddam Hussein off, we would have inherited an even bigger mess than the mess we inherited with the refugee problem. — Les Aspin

Houston is rising to the challenge of an unprecedented domestic refugee situation, … We’re responding to this in a way that you’ll be proud of this region. — Bill White

You see better conditions in refugee camps. It really shocked me how inefficient our country was. You find yourself stunned on the air, reporting what you’re seeing. — Steve Harrigan

Watch what’s going to happen, folks. It’s not going to be pretty.This includes her [Hillary Clinton] plan to bring in 620,000 new refugees from Syria and that region over a short period of time. — Donald Trump

My father came by himself across the North Korean border when he was seventeen. And hasn’t seen his brothers or sisters or parents since then. And he died some time ago, but never saw any of his relatives. My mother was a refugee in war-torn Korea. — Jim Yong Kim

We have found 29 dead bodies so far. About 9,300 villagers must stay at refugee tents because their houses were destroyed by the flood and landslide. — Edi Susilo

In refugee camps around the world, I met people who were gone. They were still walking around but had lost so much that they were unable to claim any sort of identity. Others I met found who they truly were, and they generally found it through service to others. They became teachers when there was no school, books or pencils. — Deborah Ellis

Almost every continent in the world, including our own, has refugees. But how often when we hear the word do we pause to remind ourselves what being a refugee means? — Scott Simon

For the price of resettling, one refugee in the United States, 12 could be resettled in a safe zone in their home region. Which I agree with 100 percent. — Donald Trump

Many of the first-generation post-war tycoons had no formal education. They came from refugee families, and they were educated here, so you can imagine the level of education. — Stephen Brown

After the outbreak of war, in April 1940, we left Geneva with our three children aged 4 years, 2 years and 2 weeks only to become part of the disordered refugee crowds fleeing across France from the German army. — James Meade

My favorite charity is the Womens Refugee Commission and the Nomi network. — Mamie Gummer

The refugees flee to protect their families from violence; the Europeans, on the other hand, fear for their jobs that they need to feed their families. — Jane Goodall

We would like to be sure that the humanitarian character of the refugee camps is respected. — Jennifer Pagonis

Such chaos in Nigeria could lead to disruption of oil supply, secessionist moves by regional governments, major refugee flow and instability elsewhere in West Africa. — John Negroponte

We were exiles from reality that summer. We were refugees from ourselves. — Chris Cleave

We want them to have the benefit of summer months to help to rebuild their homes and lives. But obviously, we want them not to go back until there is a secure presence, to ensure that the refugee return can be done in an organized way. — Jamie Shea

Compared with how we’ve ducked it in the United States, Canada should be really proud of how you have welcomed a significant number of refugees – far more, in fact, than we Americans have, even though our population is vastly larger. — Adam Hochschild

One hundred and fifty thousand Cambodian people in the United States now were either born in a refugee camp or their parents were born in a refugee camp. The person that sits next to you in class may be a refugee. — Sarun Chan

We were told at 11:30 this morning that the militias and the TNI — the armed forces — were attacking the refugees. We have just received a third piece of information, from another refugee in that area, who’s on the top of the mountains overlooking Dare. — David Wimhurst

It was a unique childhood, to say the least. My father was born in Patiala to refugee parents and was a part of the Indian Air Force. The talented few amongst the Air Force pilots are made test pilots. Test pilots are best suited to look at the space programme as they are trained to expect the unexpected. — Kapil Sharma

My grandmother on my father’s side, a nightclub singer, was a Jewish refugee from Prussia who ended up in Jerusalem, where she met my grandfather – a British army officer. I remember as a child having bowls of chicken soup made by her. There were lots of interesting components, like feet and necks. — Jamie Cullum

I have been a foreigner all my life, first as a daughter of diplomats, then as a political refugee and now as an immigrant in the U.S. I have had to leave everything behind and start anew several times, and I have lost most of my extended family. — Isabel Allende

Military personnel were telling us at the time — they’re trained to fight — they’re not trained to run a refugee camp. — Cheryl Little

We have run a number of campaigns in the past and have worked on a number of war issues, but there’s virtually nothing going on on this campus in terms of human rights. This is a timely opportunity to work on a global and local level. There is a big refugee population here in the Syracuse area. — Anna Hadingham

This is worst in the refugee camps, where there is the most poverty and the most frequent confrontations with Israeli soldiers. — Chris Towne

I’m aware of about 20 active refugee claims. I believe there’s another 150 to 180 others who are waiting to see what the outcome is here. — Jeffry House

It’s become increasingly indefensible to have no refugee admissions. — Doug Anderson

That person did have previous psychological problems. He had broken up with his wife, was a Bosnian refugee and, unfortunately, took his life well before the show ever aired. — Mark Burnett

The refugee crisis is just getting worse and worse without any solution. — Panos Moumtzis

Bashar Assad is a major cause of the refugees which are now flooding Europe and causing such consternation in the United States. — John McCain

It is satisfying for the descendant of a dissident refugee from Elizabeth I to present his credentials to Elizabeth II. — Kingman Brewster, Jr.

We demanded from the Israelis to move their forces outside the area of friction, at the entrances of our towns, villages and refugee camps — to no avail, — Saeb Erakat

I was a political refugee living in Venezuela. I had a job that was twelve hours a day, no money. It was a hard time. — Isabel Allende

I urge you to celebrate the extraordinary courage and contributions of refugees past and present. — Kofi Annan

Every heart to Love will come, but like a refugee — Leonard Cohen

To say you are interested in refugee returns at a time when we see house-burnings is simply not a meaningful statement. — Chris Hill

All the people in this refugee camp want is to go back to their homes, and that can only happen when it’s safe, … Anything short of that is not going to be something that I would call success. — Elizabeth Dole

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