Of all causes of such migration in most countries and areas, the most significant one is violence experienced there. According to Salehyan (2008), “Periods of civil unrest and persecution frequently generate population dislocations” (p 787). In addition, a conflict in any given area triggers massive migrations of refugees across national borders and towards other countries considered to be safe. This is evident in locations that are prone to civil and social strife such as Afghanistan, the Balkans, Sudan, and Iraq. Generally, it is due to a civil strife in one’s homeland that a person leaves it.
Anti-regime rebellions also lead to the emergence of refugees due to persecution. This is in regard to violating human rights, for example, the right to freedom of expression. However, not all governments or leaders welcome the idea of political freedom, as they prefer to silence their people. Ethnic campaigns are also major contributors to the presence of refugees in the world we live in (Salehyan, 2008). In spite of the world holding the title “civilized”, some people still think of their superiority. This is in regard to individuals who incite chaos against people they consider to be inferior to them, a practice also called ethnic cleansing. It is such events that, following tribal clashes between the Hutus and Tutsis, led to massive migration of refugees from Rwanda to neighbouring countries. In addition, a refugee situation can be caused by natural disasters within one’s own area of living by virtue of being internally displaced. This is particularly so for populations affected by natural disasters and those living in areas likely to be affected by climate change, as well as people involuntarily resettled due to development projects (Martin, 2010). According to Salehyan (2008), international conflicts also lead to the rise of the number of refugees, as they are not “the unfortunate by products of war, but may serve as catalysts for conflict” (p 787). This is seen in cases where refugees move into neighbouring countries, which, in turn, restrict migration. This fosters hostility between countries that may lead to military action and further increase of the number of refugees. One of the effects of being refugees in a foreign country is the loss of cultural identity. This is in spite of the suppression of their inner mental representations of many aspects of their native culture (Henry, 2012). As a result, refugees fail to integrate successfully in the society that they move into due to differences in culture and stereotypes posed by the natives of the host country. This leads to discrimination against refugees, which negatively affects the process of cultural adjustment (Henry, 2012). Health issues accompany refugees in all places they may go to; this is in the form of access to quality health services that may include health records. This is because the information provided by refugees on their health status comes directly from the refugee patient and is, therefore, not a professional view point. This way, refugee agencies are unable to direct health and humanitarian services to enhance awareness and meet population-based needs (Mateen, Carone, Al-Saedy, Nyce, Ghosn, Mutuerandu, & Black, 2012). Moreover, forced migrations result in severe demographic consequences in terms of mortality, human suffering, and displacement of populations (Zimmer, Knodel, Kim, & Puch, 2005); they also result in the destruction of social structures that destabilize a society and drive it to the brink of strife. This way, cohesion between and among families is disrupted, and the bond is weakened, resulting in the need to look for one’s way out instead of looking out for the whole society.