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Tuesday, 19 June, 2001, 16:44 GMT 17:44 UK
UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Ruud Lubbers
Today there are more than 20 million refugees - 10 times more than when the Geneva Convention was adopted 50 years ago.

But thousands of them are not recognised as refugees by the strict wording of the convention, and many are not given asylum.

Some people say we should rework the convention, acknowledging the different reasons people flee - for example, war, famine, or persecution by non-state agents such as Afghanistan's Taliban or RUF rebels in Sierra Leone.

But others say that receiving countries already cannot cope with huge influxes of people.

What should the UNHCR's priorities be in the 21st century, and how should it raise funds?

Ruud Lubbers, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, joined us for a special edition of Talking Point ON AIR, the weekly phone-in programme of BBC News Online and BBC World Service.

  Click here to watch (56k modems)


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