“Long wait for Syrian refugees in Bulgaria”

BBC.com ran an article recently on the difficulties experienced by Syrian refugees in Bulgaria. Have a read at the link below:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-25978066

The article illustrates two unfortunate realities of the Syrian situation in particular: first, the dire situation of Syrian refugees as they search for some sense of normality in this ongoing crisis; and second, the widespread effect that seemingly insular or regional conflicts can have after people are forced to flee their homes.

Some 6000 refugees have crossed into Bulgaria from neighboring Turkey after fleeing Syria earlier during the conflict. Altogether that is a journey of some 1200 km or more. Now in Bulgaria, the poorest country in the European Union, these refugee families are living in camps and prefabricated huts while they search for work, assistance, permanent homes, or any semblance of their former lives. Even documentation is proving difficult. Finally, as the article reports, some of the refugees are considering heading further west for Serbia via smuggling operations.

The circumstances of these refugees serves as a reminder of how conflict displacement’s impact can be felt many miles away. Refugees sometimes arrive in places situated in some entirely different geopolitical region, and in countries whose governments are unprepared or reluctant to recognize the needs of the refugee community. This lack of awareness is what Refugees International Japan aims to resolve. In addition to funding projects for refugees, we hope to explain that conflict displacement is a global issue and one that affects everyone.

Take a look at “Long wait for Syrian refugees in Bulgaria” at the link above. And head on over to our website, http://refugeesinternationaljapan.org/, where you can find our “Donate” page and read more about the work that RIJ does.

Adam Becker

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