Fleeing conflict, famine and domestic oppression, the number of refugees has swelled to more than 20 million. Many are seeking refuge in countries like Turkey, Germany and the United States, but for many their lives are left in limbo, unable to build a new life. And with this challenge, the international community is reminding signatories of the UN Refugee Convention of their duties to help those in need. But Japan seems immune to this pressure, since in 2016, it took in only 28 refugees.

With less than 2% of its population being foreign-born, Japan has always shied away from the idea of a multi-cultural society. This is one of the reasons why it is so hard to become a Japanese citizen. It's even harder for asylum seekers, since the process requires a lot of paperwork and all of it must be submitted in Japanese. So why does Japan take in any refugees at all?

Learn More:
Reuters: Japan took in just 28 refugees in 2016, despite record applications


Financial Times: Japan accepted 28 refugees in 2016


Bloomberg: Japan Opens Up to Foreign Workers (Just Don't Call it Immigration)