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BEIRUT – A Norwegian humanitarian group says a record 38 million people have been internally displaced in their countries worldwide, with 2.2 million Iraqis alone forced to flee from their homes in 2014 after the Islamic State group overrun their areas.
The study by the Norwegian Refugee Council's Internal Displacement Monitoring Center was released Wednesday.
It says 11 million were newly displaced last year — mostly because of conflicts in Syria, Iraq, South Sudan, Nigeria and the Democratic Republic of Congo, accounting for 60 percent of the new displacement.
The group says at least 1.1 million Syrians also fled their homes last year.
Syria has the highest number of internally displaced, with 7.6 million dislodged because of the conflict, now in its fifth year. That's at least 35 percent of the population.