Friday, February 16, 2007

Iraqis on the Run: What the World can Do

As I have written here previously, I visited a preschool in the East Amman neighborhood in which Iraqi refugees are housed. Jordanian resources are strained to the limit, housing prices have gone through the roof, and since Iraqi refugees are not allowed to work in Jordan, there is no end in sight to this situation. The U.N. estimates that there are 2 million refugees in the region, with at least that number displaced inside Iraq, as well.

This editorial from the Christian Science Monitor suggests that the U.S. and the U.K. bear responsibility for helping to address the refugee dilemma. We have a long way to go. Since the war begain, a grand total of 466 Iraqis have been admitted to the U.S. as refugees (State Department report at a Senate Hearing in January). In 2007, the U.S. plans to allow 7000. In the meantime, there are many U.S. citizens of Iraqi descent who are desperately trying to get their family members to a safe place where they can work, put their children in school, recommence normal living as responsible citizens. We need a policy around this, and we need it now.

Iraqis on the run: what the world can do |

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