Bringing attention to World Refugee Day

Angelina Jolie Pitt, the special envoy for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, joined forces with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in Washington June 20 to shine a spotlight on World Refugee Day.

The actress and humanitarian asked people “to take a moment and to truly grasp what a refugee crisis of today’s magnitude means for peace and security of the world.” She urged people to understand that “we are facing a world of wars we cannot ignore or turn our backs on. To do that would be naive, irresponsible and dangerous.”

Kerry noted that some 65 million people are refugees or displaced by war or conflict, the most at any time in history.

“We’re living in a contentious time when some try to make a negative out of being a refugee or somehow turn people who are refugees into threats,” Kerry said.

Kerry said he had just met with a group of people who are working at the U.S. Department of State, each of them working with refugees. “They are American; they’re as American as anybody; and they have a story to tell about how America keeps faith with people’s dreams and hopes and aspirations.”