The Syrian refugee facts are startling. In the past few decades, there has been an enormous influx of migrants and refugees into the Mediterranean countries and other Western European countries due to numerous conflicts. Recently, the plight of Syrian refugees has captured the world’s attention.
The Syrian conflict began in March of 2011, when pro-democracy protests broke out in the streets. These protests were against the regime of the Syrian government and President Bashar al-Assad.
When supporters of the President and rebel groups began fighting each other, the protest evolved into a full-out civil war. By August of 2015, an estimated 250,000 people had died due to the violence.
Top Syrian Refugee Facts:
- The conflict has displaced nearly 12 million Syrians from their homes and families.
- More than 75 percent of Syrian refugees are women and children.
- Syrian citizens represented 49 percent of the individuals entering countries via the Mediterranean Sea.
- According to the UNHCR, there are already 3,151 dead or missing refugees in 2016 alone.
- Most refugees stay in the Middle Eastern region, escaping to countries such as Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey and Iraq.
- Since 2011, the conflict displaces an average of 50 Syrian families every hour.
- Three out of four Syrians live in poverty.
- As of January 31, 2016, nearly 10,000 refugee children have gone missing in Europe. Human trafficking circles are likely culprits.
- The crisis in Syria has reversed 10 years of progress in education for Syrian children, according to the U.N children’s agency.
- In 2015, the European Union granted 292,540 refugees asylum, with Germany, Sweden, and Italy granting the most.
Many Syrian refugees suffer from the low quality of life and lack of resources in refugee camps. However, many countries and international groups around the world have worked hard to ameliorate the living conditions for these individuals.
Organizations such as the Karam Foundation and Project Amal ou Salaam focus on raising funds and providing programs or educational resources for children. Other groups, like Sunrise USA and Islamic Relief USA, work on getting necessities like food, clothing, trauma-care facilities and more.
As of May 31, 2015, the United States had given more than $3 billion in aid to Syria.
The Syrian War Crimes Accountability Act of 2015 (S.756) has passed the Senate and is under consideration in the House. This bill would call on the President to support efforts in Syria and force the Department of State to make Congress aware of various war crimes.
Efforts like this have increased awareness and accountability of the Syrian conflict. These actions ensure a quicker end to the violence and a hasty return home for Syrian refugees all over the world.
– Ashley Morefield