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IRO symbolThe International Refugee Organization (IRO) was an intergovernmental organization founded in April 1946 to deal with the massive refugee problem created by World War II. In 1948, the treaty establishing the IRO formally entered into force and the IRO became a United Nations specialized agency. The IRO assumed most of the functions of the earlier United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration. In 1952, operations of the IRO ceased, and it was replaced by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).