News / Middle East

Undocumented Syrian Refugees Suffer Deprivation

Undocumented Syrian Refugees Suffer Deprivationi
X
March 22, 2013 4:58 PM
As many as 200,000 undocumented Syrian refugees are living outside the refugee camps in southern Turkey. Many don't have passports and Turkish authorities are trying to register and look after them. But the undocumented refugees say aid is still scarce and some are forced to live off the land. Patrick Wells reports for VOA from Kilis, Turkey.
TEXT SIZE - +
Patrick Wells

As many as 200,000 undocumented Syrian refugees are living outside the refugee camps in southern Turkey. Many don't have passports and Turkish authorities are trying to register and look after them. But the undocumented refugees say aid is still scarce and some are forced to live off the land.


Um’Steif Aysa al Fadil, a Syrian mother of eight, gathers khubays, a leafy green vegetable, on the scrap of land she now inhabits outside Kilis in southern Turkey.

 

This plant, which she will boil and feed to her children, is the only regular food her family has had since they fled government airstrikes in Syria a month ago.

 

Um’Steif’s family are among tens of thousands of undocumented Syrian refugees who have crossed into Turkey.

 

They spent their first 10 days here sleeping in a public park before finding this plot to rent. But their money has almost run out and her sons can’t find work.

 

"It’s winter time and we don’t know anybody here, that’s why we can’t find work," Um’Steif said.

 

She says she and her family miss home. "I wish we could just wake up tomorrow and go back to Syria, Syria is so beautiful," Um’Steif said.

 

Um’Steif’s son-in-law, Ahmed Naseef, arrived in Turkey a few days ago after his children narrowly escaped an air raid. He said without a house or a job he has no idea how he is going to look after them.


"We’re not getting much support, only a little. We don't have much of a chance here because we’re here illegally, without passports," Ahmed Naseef said.


The plight of these refugees does not seem to improve with time. Ahmed Mustafa, a tailor, fled Syria seven months ago. His family of 11 now live in two rooms above a stable but he says they could be evicted at any time. Ahmed’s children spent last winter without shoes and none of them has a school to attend.

 

"How do you think my life is now?! I have 8 children and I lost my entire house, It’s completely destroyed, there isn’t even a glass left there to drink water from," Mustafa said.

 

Turkey, with the support of the UNHCR, is opening 10 coordination centers to register undocumented Syrians and distribute aid. So far, it has processed 50,000 people but an additional 150,000 remain unregistered.

You May Like

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

John the XXIII and John Paul II will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square on April 27 More

Thailand Reacts to Plots Targeting Israelis

Authorities hope arrest of two Lebanese suspects will disrupt plot to attack young Israeli tourists More

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

'Once Upon a Forest' takes viewers deep into heart of tropical rainforest More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Churchi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
Jerome Socolovsky
April 22, 2014 4:14 PM
On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Robotic Mission Kicks Up Lunar Dust

A robotic mission to the moon was deliberately crashed onto the lunar surface late last week, but not before scientists had collected data gathered by the spacecraft which was designed to self-destruct. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports on the preliminary findings of the craft, called LADEE - an acronym for Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer.
Video

Video Boko Haram Claims Responsibility for Bombing in Nigerian Capital

The Nigerian militant group known as Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for a bombing in the capital on April 14th that killed 75 people. In the video message, Abubakar Shekau, the man who says he ordered the bombing, says nothing about the mass abduction of more than 100 teenage girls, most of whom are still missing. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Abuja.
Video

Video Ukraine Developments Hang Over Obama Trip to Asia

President Barack Obama's trip to Asia this week comes as concerns over Beijing's territorial ambitions are growing in the region. Those concerns have been compounded by Russia's recent actions in Ukraine and the possibility that Chinese strategists might be looking to Crimea as a model for its territorial disputes with its neighbors. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid