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What is the Syrian Refugee Crisis?

Updated: Feb 19, 2021

The Syrian Refugee Crisis has displaced 6.6 million Syrians, with Turkey hosting about 3.6 million of them. The Syrian Refugee Crisis started due to the March 2011 violent government crackdown on public demonstrations in support of a group of teenagers, who were arrested for anti-government drawings in the southern town of Daraa. The increased violence and bombings in Syria, which became regular occurances during its civil war, forced Syrian citizens to leave their homes. A Syrian refugee in Lebanon has been quoted as saying, “We felt maybe it’s our turn to die. But we didn’t want to die. So we made up our minds to leave.”

This refugee crisis associated with and sparked by the Syrian Civil War, has led to the death of more than 400,000 individuals.Through this crisis, there are around 13.1 million people that are in need of basic rights/needs in India and since 2014, over 6,800 children have been killed or injured in the conflict. It has been characterised by violent extremism, authoritative government actions, lack of basic human rights, and displacement of peoples . Such displaced individuals were housed by countries like Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt, and Jordan, who became the centre of this world refugee crisis. Iraq has also seen a growing number of Syrians arriving, hosting more than 246,000, while in Egypt UNHCR provides protection and assistance to more than 126,000 refugees. However, moving to these new countries has not guaranteed them basic necessities such as employment opportunities, healthcare and education. For example, in Lebanon, refugees have no financial resources and those in the workforce only receive an income of around 177 dollars per month. This is especially devastating as around a third of the refugee households in Lebanon depict the effects of food insecurity and low nutrition levels. In neighbouring countries, refugees are forced to live in exile, and go through various channels of bureaucracy to access basic healthcare. In countries like Jordan, approximately half of Syrian children under the age of five are not getting access to proper health services, including vaccinations and disability support.

Due to the recent developments of Covid-19 and the impacts of social isolation, the refugee crisis has grown even more perilous, resulting in a lack of access to basic resources such as drinking water and healthcare which has negatively impacted the lives of Syrian Refugees., especially children. Even before this pandemic, nearly 10,000 Syrian refugee children were either unaccompanied or separated from their families, which gave rise to their continuous exploitation. We cannot even imagine their situation in these current times as they are also faced with issues such as the absence of legitimate documentation. As we stay within the confines of our own home, we must remember that there are people of all ages out there who have lost their own homes and communities. It is time that we assist them. We must educate ourselves on the perils and difficulties of the Syrian refugees as we aim to create an inclusive & sensitive world.

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