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Asylum seekers left high and dry in Indonesia
9 April 2014 (IRIN ), Australia’s military-led operation to prevent boats carrying asylum seekers from reaching its shores has been hailed by Prime Minister Tony Abbott as a success, with over 100 days elapsing since the last boat reached its target. But in Indonesia - the country from which most of the boats previously departed - Australia’s tough new measures have stranded over 10,000 asylum seekers and refugees who can neither proceed to their desired destination nor, in many cases, return home.
Access to education an added challenge for refugees in Egypt
8 April 2014 (IRIN ), As the number of Syrians in Egypt rises, refugees say it has become increasingly difficult to find places for their children in already overstretched government schools. In addition, refugees, asylum seekers and migrants in Egypt complain of unaffordable school costs in private and public schools, bureaucratic enrolment procedures, and a growing atmosphere of suspicion, xenophobia and discrimination in the classroom.
Turkey’s ambitions as a rising donor
27 March 2014 (IRIN ), From humble beginnings, Turkey is maturing into a major player in international humanitarian aid, becoming the world’s fourth largest government donor of humanitarian aid in 2012. And as it has grown, Turkey’s aid has taken its own form - largely bilateral and on the frontlines - arousing both critics and admirers.
Displacement, violence likely cause of Iraq’s first polio case in 14 years
24 March 2014 (IRIN ), Health officials in Iraq are stepping up polio immunization and surveillance following the first confirmed case of the virus in the country in 14 years.
UAE aid - a top 20 donor plans to get bigger
6 March 2014 (IRIN ), Atop a tall metal pole some 80km north of the Jordanian capital, Amman, a giant United Arab Emirates (UAE) flag flaps near the entrance to a Syrian refugee camp.
Arab Spring complicates shifting demands in health sector
30 January 2014 (IRIN ), Healthcare needs are changing in the Arab world, and chronic diseases linked to rising prosperity and aging populations are forcing health services to retool, even as the region grapples with political turmoil and uncertainty.
Iraq fighting complicates aid to the displaced
8 January 2014 (IRIN ), The UN is warning of a “critical humanitarian situation” that is only “likely to worsen” following sustained fighting among Islamic insurgents, tribal groups and government forces in the Iraqi province of Anbar that has displaced at least 5,000 families.
Life-saving hepatitis C drug approved, but cost is high
23 December 2013 (IRIN ), Following approvals in the US and Europe this month of a new drug to treat hepatitis C, activists are pushing for the medication to be made available in poor countries.
Syria Diary: Beggar at the door
19 November 2013 (IRIN ), The writer is a recent graduate of the University of Damascus from a well-to-do family belonging to a Syrian minority. For security reasons, he prefers to stay anonymous. In this fifth diary entry, he shares the signs he sees around him of an increasingly malnourished and desperate people.
Syrian aid in the tech age
14 November 2013 (IRIN ), Innovative use of technologies like satellite imagery, QR codes, tablets and biometric identification is helping aid workers deliver a better, more dignified response to Syrians in need.
Helping host communities help Syrian refugees
8 November 2013 (IRIN ), Syrian refugees living in urban and peri-urban areas in Jordan and elsewhere in the region are placing an increasing burden on the local communities hosting them. As the Syrian crisis drags on, aid agencies and donors are looking to shift away from strictly humanitarian aid for refugees to a longer-term development approach that also benefits affected national populations and governments.
Hosting Syrian refugees - the cost conundrum
8 November 2013 (IRIN ), Syria’s neighbours say they have collectively spent billions of dollars hosting Syrian refugees. What are the actual costs? And can there also be economic benefits to refugee influxes?
Planning for winter in Jordan’s Za’atari camp
4 November 2013 (IRIN ), As the first rains of the season hit Za’atari camp for Syrian refugees in Jordan, aid agencies are trying to ensure refugees are better protected against winter storms than they were last year.
Analysis: Politics and power in Jordan’s Za'atari refugee camp
1 November 2013 (IRIN ), More than a year after Za’atari camp was opened in Jordan as a temporary solution for Syrian refugees, it is slowly transforming into something much more permanent. One of the demands of an increasingly long-term aid operation is a greater focus on the camp’s governance - a sensitive area at the crossroads of politics and humanitarian relief.
Syrian crisis pushing Lebanese into poverty
31 October 2013 (IRIN ), The impact of the Syrian crisis could drag 170,000 Lebanese into poverty and increase unemployment in Lebanon by 10 percent by the end of 2014, a new report has shown.
Serving up five-star service for refugees the UAE way
29 October 2013 (IRIN ), A new camp for Syrian refugees in Jordan run by the United Arab Emirates Red Crescent has unrivalled services and accommodation. But some aid workers wonder how sustainable the operation is and if the money spent could have been used to help a larger number of refugees in other camps.
Syrians face bleak time in Bulgaria’s broken asylum system
22 October 2013 (IRIN ), In an abandoned schoolhouse outside the Bulgarian capital Sofia, 380 migrants and asylum seekers are living in squalid conditions. They are part of a new wave of migrants and asylum seekers, mostly Kurds from Syria, who have strained Bulgaria’s inefficient asylum system to breaking point.
Analysis: Getting it right for Syrian refugees the second time round
16 October 2013 (IRIN ), In building Azraq, the newest camp for Syrian refugees in the Jordanian desert, aid agencies have benefited from many lessons learned from the now notorious Za’atari camp. But while the new and improved camp stands ready to go, it has yet to receive its first refugee.
Syrian refugees worried as UN targets its food aid in Lebanon
9 October 2013 (IRIN ), As the Syrian refugee crisis drags on, the World Food Programme in Lebanon is targeting its food aid to the most vulnerable instead of giving blanket assistance. But aid workers are concerned that among the 200,000 refugees that will stop receiving food vouchers, some may be wrongly cut off.
Haves and have-nots in Jordan’s Za’atari camp
8 October 2013 (IRIN ), To accommodate the needs of some 120,000 Syrian refugees, a market has sprung up along the main road of Jordan’s Za’atari camp. But its frenzy of commerce has spawned winners and losers, buyers and sellers, haves and have-nots, honest traders and outright thieves. Such divisions have fuelled resentment, particularly as those better off are viewed as taking advantage of the aid system at the expense of those living at the edge of survival, in an environment with very little security or regulations.

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