Refugees. Displaced. Can one be a refugee without being displaced? Or alternatively, can one be displaced, without fitting the description of a refugee? The headline above, seems to suggest there's a distinction between being displaced and being a refugee.
And yet looking through a number of online dictionaries, one notices an almost similar description, meaning-wise.
A refugee is someone who has been forced to leave their country due to war, persecution or natural disaster. A displaced person on the other hand, is one who is forced to leave their home because of war, persecution or natural disaster.
The only difference it seems, is that a refugee is forced to leave their country, while a displaced person is essentially forced to leave their home, not necessarily their country.
Ok, that distinction is now clearer. But still, the article's headline reads:
'Syrian refugees top three million, half of them displaced, says UN.'
Now, say with me slowly:
Syrian refugees are three million. They have all been uprooted from their country. Half of them though, are displaced, meaning out of the 3 million forced to leave their country, 1.5 million have only been forced to leave their homes, but not their country.
Spot the contradictory nonsense?