News / Middle East

UN: Syrians to Replace Afghans as Biggest Refugee Population

FILE- Syrian refugees sit by their tent in a Syrian Refugee camp on the Lebanese border town of Arsal, in the eastern Bekaa, Dec. 15, 2013.
FILE- Syrian refugees sit by their tent in a Syrian Refugee camp on the Lebanese border town of Arsal, in the eastern Bekaa, Dec. 15, 2013.
VOA News
The U.N.'s top refugee official says Syrians are about to pass Afghans as the world's biggest refugee population.

High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres told the General Assembly Tuesday that five years ago, just before the civil war started, Syria was the world's second-largest refugee hosting country.

Now, its neighbors have provided Syrians themselves with safety, at a cost of dramatic economic and social consequences.

"It breaks my heart to see this nation that for decades welcomed refugees from other countries, ripped apart and forced into exile itself," Guterres told the 193-member U.N. assembly.

Guterres says the Syrian civil war has created ghastly human tragedies. He says even though the Syrians have shelter from the fighting, they have not escaped the trauma and psychological wounds.

The U.N. children's agency says nearly 2,000 Syrian children in Lebanese refugee camps are at risk of starving to death.  It also says about 10,000 Syrian children five years old and younger suffer from acute malnutrition.

Some 9.3 million Syrians - almost half the population - need help, the United Nations said. Some 2.4 million of those people have fled the country during the three-year civil war.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told the U.N. General Assembly that the world body would do everything to implement a U.N. Security Council resolution - adopted on Saturday to boost humanitarian aid access - and get help to millions in need.

"Supplies are ready to go into areas that have been hard to reach, and into the towns and cities that have been under siege," Ban said. "What we need is guaranteed safe passage for humanitarian supplies along key routes."

"It is incumbent on the Syrian government and all parties to the conflict to reach these agreements," he said.

Some information for this report provided by Reuters.

You May Like

Obama: I Will Do 'Everything I Can' to Close Guantanamo

US president says prison continues 'to inspire jihadists and extremists around the world' More

Sierra Leone Educates on Safe Ebola Burials

Also, country is improving at rapid response to isolated outbreaks, but health workers need to be even faster, officials say More

Christmas Gains Popularity in Vietnam

Increasingly wealthy Vietnamese embrace holiday due to its non-religious glamor, commercial appeal More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ugandan Doctors Aid Victims of Sudan's Civil Wari
X
Adam Bailes
December 22, 2014 3:45 PM
In Sudan's state of South Kordofan, the number of amputees as result of civil war is in the thousands, but few have access to sufficient medical help. Adam Bailes recently visited the area and says a small team of Ugandan doctors has been providing remote help, producing new prosthetic limbs for those in need.
Video

Video Ugandan Doctors Aid Victims of Sudan's Civil War

In Sudan's state of South Kordofan, the number of amputees as result of civil war is in the thousands, but few have access to sufficient medical help. Adam Bailes recently visited the area and says a small team of Ugandan doctors has been providing remote help, producing new prosthetic limbs for those in need.
Video

Video Jane Monheit Christmas Special

Chanteuse Jane Monheit sings the holiday classic “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” and explains why it’s her favorite song of the season.
Video

Video Calm Amid Fear in Daily Life in S. Sudan’s Town of Bentiu

Six months ago, Bentiu was a ghost town. The capital of northern Unity State, near South Sudan’s important oil fields, had changed hands several times in fighting between government forces and rebels. Calm returned in November and since then, residents of Bentiu have been trying to regain some sense of normalcy. Bentiu’s market has reopened there are plans to start school again. But fears of new attacks hang heavy, as Benno Muchler reports from Bentiu.
Video

Video US Business Groups Press for Greater Access to Cuba

President Barack Obama's decision to do all he can to ease restrictions on U.S. trade, travel and financial activities with Cuba has drawn criticism from some conservatives and Republicans. People who bring tourists to the island and farmers who want to sell more food to Cuba, however, think they can do a lot more business with Cuba. VOA's Jim Randle reports.
Video

Video Three Cities Bid for Future Obama Presidential Library

President Barack Obama still has two years left in his term in office, but the effort to establish his post-presidential library is already underway. The bid for the Obama Presidential Library is down to four locations in three states -- New York, Hawaii, and Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, each of them played an important part in the president’s life before he reached the White House.
Video

Video Fears of More Political Gridlock in 2015

2014 proved to be a difficult year politically for President Barack Obama and a very good year for the U.S. Republican Party. Republican gains in the November midterm elections gave them control of the Senate and House of Representatives for the next two years -- setting the stage for more confrontation and gridlock in the final two years of the Obama presidency. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.

All About America

AppleAndroid