They are known as the stateless. People who have neither citizenship nor a nationality.
Often it means they have no travel documents, find it difficult to get a job, and are denied access to medical care and other state services. Their plight is highlighted in a report by the UN.
The most widely covered case in recent months has been Myanmar’s Rohingya community. It became officially the largest stateless minority in the world after Myanmar passed a law in 1982 that denied the Rohingya citizenship.
Until August, there were about one million Rohingya in Myanmar, but more than half of them are now in Bangladesh after fleeing a military crackdown.
But why, in 2017, are so many people in this position? And what can be done about it?
Presenter: Martine Dennis
Melanie Khanna – Chief of Statelessness Section at UNHCR
Amal de Chickera – The Institute on Statelessness and Inclusion
Wakar Uddin – Director-General, the Arakan Rohingya Union