Sharon Perkins

 Iraqi Refugees

    The US Committee for Refugees defines refugees in broad terms, encompassing persons fleeing, civil strife, famine and environmental disasters. The principle sources for refugees in 2001 were as follows, Afghanistan- 4 million+, Palestinians- 4 million+, Burma, Angola and Sudan – one half million each. The large number of refugees from Afghanistan is due to our attack on that country following the events of September 11, 2001.

    How many refugees will be dislocated because of the war in Iraq? “The UN refugee agency said Monday it was gearing up for a conflict in the Gulf by pre-positioning additional stocks of relief supplies in the Middle East, amid fears of a mass exodus from Iraq.” This is a quote from Geneva in December. Ore recent news of the approaching war with Iraq has nearby countries fearing the worst. “ More than missiles, every country around Iraq is afraid of hundreds of thousands of refugees,” said Shafeeq Ghabra, a political scientist at Kuwait University.

    Many organizations serve the refugee populations. International organizations, government agencies, private organizations and local offices all work to bring food, shelter and medical care to those fleeing their own countries. The United Nations High Commission of Refugees has raised less than half of the money needed for the first month of war with Iraq.
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