Wednesday, January 31, 2007

the new Iraqi diaspora

I've written a short piece for Hii Dunia, a blog about development and global politics, about the problems being faced by Middle Eastern countries who are taking in Iraqi refugees, a hugely underestimated issue. A short extract from it follows:

"Two countries, Syria and Jordan, have done the most to alleviate the terrific burdens of the displaced Iraqis. With figures on the rise daily (an estimated 40,000 Iraqis are crossing the border into Syria every month) the statistics are unbelievable. There are over 700,000 refugees in Jordan, upwards of 600,000 in Syria, 100,000 in Egypt, 54,000 in Iran and between 20 and 40,000 in Lebanon. For a country such as Jordan such an intake is quite breathtaking, especially when it is taken into account that these are cautious statistics. To put that in context, for a country with a population of only 5.6 million, taking on that many refugees means that the thousands of Iraqi men, women and children there now number more than ten percent of the population, which is the equivalent of over 30 million people arriving on America's shores."
Click here to read more; comments are closed on this post, but do post with any thoughts or comments over at Hii Dunia.