Needs soar as number of Syrian refugees tops 3 million

News Stories, 29 August 2014 GENEVA, Switzerland, UNHCR -The UN Refugee Agency reports that Syria's intensifying refugee crisis will today pass a record 3 million people, amid reports of horrifying conditions inside the country. These include cities where populations are surrounded, people are going hungry and civilians are being indiscriminately killed. Members of a Syrian refugee family in their tent in Lebanon, which has taken in 1.14 million of the 3 million refugees. "Almost half of all Syrians have now been forced to abandon their homes and flee for their lives. One in every eight Syrians has fled across the border, fully a million more than a year ago. A further 6.5 million are displa

Daily Chart: Exodus from Syria

Jan 12th 2015, 14:22 by The Data Team THE statistics on Syria's civil war are horrifying. Since March 2011 around 200,000 people have been killed and 6.5m people have become internally displaced. A new report from the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, published on January 7th, brought another grim figure: Syria has overtaken Afghanistan to become the biggest source of refugees in the world. More than 3m Syrians, or one in eight of its population, had fled the country by the end of June 2014, the most recent date for cross-country comparisons. In the six months since, another 300,000 have left. This massive outflow is having a profound impact on the wider region. The vast majority of Syrian

Fleeing civil war, Syrian refugees slide into poverty, UN report says

Updated January 14, 2015 11:34 PM By ZACHARY R. DOWDY zachary.dowdy@newsday.com UNITED NATIONS -- Syrian refugees who fled to Jordan during the civil war are "sliding into abject poverty" as war rages on in their country, according to a UN report on their plight. The report, "Living in the Shadows," was released Wednesday by the UN high commissioner for refugees as the complex and expanding war in Syria is on the brink of beginning its fifth year -- with no diplomatic solution in sight. "I am here to express my solidarity with Syrian refugees, as the impact of snowstorm Huda is still tangible and posing an even greater strain on their already dire living conditions," said António Guterres,

Houston to receive large share of Syrian refugees

By Lomi Kriel | January 19, 2015 | Updated: January 19, 2015 4:45pm Photo By Hussein Malla/STF Syrian refugee children sit on the ground inside their tent home as they take their dinner at a Syrian refugee camp, in Deir Zannoun village in the Bekaa valley, eastern Lebanon, on Monday, Jan. 5, 2015. A snow storm is expected to hit Lebanon Monday affecting Syrian refugees, many of whom live in tents without heating. The government estimates there are about 1.5 million Syrians in Lebanon, about one-quarter of the total population. (AP Photo/Hussein Malla) U.S. State Department officials expect about 2,000 Syrian refugees to arrive this year with as many as 10,000 by the end of 2016. Houston, whi

MFA ISSUES EMERGENCY WINTER APPEAL

The Multifaith Alliance has issued an emergency appeal TO HELP assist freezing Syrian refugees. To read the appeal letter, click here. A 6-year-old boy froze to death during the desperate crossing from #Syria

The Snow Storm

A violent winter storm brings heavy snow and rain to the Middle East, compounding the misery of Syrian refugees. WRITTEN BY Kate Bond Friday 9 January 2015 Aisha, a mother of four from Syria, wraps a blanket around her shoulders as the wind beats against the walls of the tent. Outside, snow is piling up and soon the family’s food will run out. “We are really scared of the storm,” she says, shivering as she hands some fruit to her children. “My husband must go on the roof every hour to clear the snow and I’m worried he might fall.” Bathed in the dim orange glow of a wood-burning stove, 36-year-old Aisha looks exhausted. This will be her family’s fourth winter away from home, and storms like t

War stokes further growth in forced displacement in first half 2014

News Stories, 7 January 2015 Syrians, for the first time, have become the largest refugee population under UNHCR's mandate. GENEVA, January 7 (UNHCR) – The UN refugee agency on Tuesday reported that war in the Middle East, Africa and elsewhere had uprooted an estimated 5.5 million people during the first six months of 2014, signalling a further rise in the number of people forcibly displaced. UNHCR's new "Mid-Year Trends 2014" report shows that of the 5.5 million who were newly displaced, 1.4 million fled across international borders becoming refugees, while the rest were displaced within their own countries. Taking into account existing displaced populations, data revisions, voluntary retur

Lebanon has just done the unthinkable

The real story behind Lebanon's new visa restrictions on Syrians is the breakdown of borders from Baghdad to Beirut. Last updated: 06 Jan 2015 13:42 ALJAZEERA AMERICA John Bell (John Bell is Director of the Middle East Programme at the Toledo International Centre for Peace in Madrid. He is a former UN and Canadian diplomat, and served as Political Adviser to the Personal Representative of the UN Secretary-General for southern Lebanon and adviser to the Canadian government.) Syrian presence in Lebanon is so pervasive it may well be impossible to manage the situation [Reuters] Lebanon has just done the apparently unthinkable and placed visa control on the entry of Syrians into the country. Bef

MFA Founder and Colleagues Interviewed: Can Anyone Help Syria’s Refugees? One Woman Thinks So

Not enough funds, worldwide indifference, logistical difficulties—the challenges are great, but a few organizations are working to improve the lives of Syrian refugees. By Ben Cohen, The Tower Magazine If the Bashar al-Assad regime that still rules Syria is ever removed from power, its most enduring legacy will be symbolized by the millions of refugees who have fled the country since it erupted into brutal civil war in 2011. In August 2014, the number of externally displaced Syrians passed the three million mark for the first time. This means, in simple and stark terms, that the country once famous for maintaining the kind of stability that only a totalitarian regime can provide has now pres

Syria Deaths Hit New High in 2014, Observer Group Says

By RICK GLADSTONE and MOHAMMAD GHANNAM JAN. 1, 2015 Carrying milk for sale in the Old City of Aleppo, Syria. A monitoring group said over 3,500 children were among more than 76,000 civil war fatalities in 2014. Credit Mahmoud Hebbo/Reuters More than 76,000 people died in Syria’s civil war in 2014, including more than 3,500 children, a monitoring group reported on Thursday. The figures would make last year the deadliest in Syria since the conflict began in March 2011. The figures from the monitoring group, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, put the total number of dead in the conflict as of Wednesday at 206,603. The group, based in Britain, uses a network of contacts inside Syria to tal

MFA supports IRC call for greater commitment to help Syrian refugee crisis in 2015: See op-ed by IRC

A year from hell to leave behind Build a better 2015 for people from Syria to Congo and beyond BY David Miliband NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Wednesday, December 31, 2014, 5:00 AM New York always aims to be the biggest and the best. So it is with the annual party in Times Square: An estimated 1 million people cram into the area, and more than a billion watch on TV. But New York also does firsts. So it is with the decision that this year, the celebrations will have a charity partner: the International Rescue Committee I lead. We were founded by Albert Einstein when he fled to New York from Germany in 1933. Now we work in 40 countries to help people whose lives have been shattered by conflict and disas

Multifaith Alliance partner IRC To Raise Awareness of Humanitarian Crises on New Year's Eve

December 29, 2014 Selected earlier this month to be the first-ever charity partner for the annual New Year's Eve celebration in New York City's Times Square, the International Rescue Committee hopes to leverage the event to raise awareness of the plight of displaced people around the world. IRC president and CEO David Miliband, among others, will push the Waterford Crystal button signaling the lowering of the Times Square New Year's Eve Ball at 11:59 p.m. and lead revelers in the final countdown to 2015. "As a time to celebrate new beginnings and embrace the challenges for the year ahead," said Milliband, "the IRC, together with its partners, looks forward to kicking off 2015 with a renewed

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