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Push and pull factors in Syrian migration - Assignment Example

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The war started as a popular uprising against President Bashar al-Assad’s rule. The uprising started as street protests in the southern city of Deraa in March 2011. The authorities had arrested and tortured some youngsters…
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Push and pull factors in Syrian migration
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Push and Pull Factors in Syrian Migration Syria has been entangled in a civil war since The war started as a popular uprising against President Bashar al-Assad’s rule. The uprising started as street protests in the southern city of Deraa in March 2011. The authorities had arrested and tortured some youngsters who had painted rebellious slogans on a school wall. The move triggered nationwide protests demanding the resignation of President Assad (Wsj.com). Government security forces responded by opening fire on the demonstrators, killing hundreds of them. The protests culminated into armed conflicts against government security forces and eventually turned into a civil war between the government and rebel forces. Most people left the country when government forces intensified the bombardment of rebel-held areas (BBC).
The civil war has displaced many people. Some of them have sought refuge in the neighboring countries such as Lebanon, Turkey, Egypt and Jordan. According to UNHCR, the number of registered Syrian refugees was 2,863,595 as at 9th July 9, 2014. There were a further 45,503 refugees awaiting registration. The UNHCR also estimates that 6.5 million refugees are internally displaced in the country (Unhcr.org).
The largest exodus of Syrians has been from areas that have witnessed the worst conflict. In Deraa, the birthplace of the revolution, an estimated 355,485 (19%) people have fled their homes since the conflict started. In Homs, an estimated 344,198 (18%) people have left their homes. In Aleppo, it is estimated that 285,601 refugees have left for the neighboring countries. Most of the people migrating from Syria to other countries are women and children. According to UNHCR estimates, nearly half of those fleeing the conflict are children. Three-quarters of these Syrian children are under the age of 11. The Syrians displaced by the war remain as refugees in their new locations. About 130,000 of them are in Zaatari Refugee Camp in the Jordanian desert. Security remains a major challenge to the residents of the camp (Unhcr.org).
One of the effects of the Syrian civil war is the creation of a humanitarian crisis. The fighting has displaced millions of people from their homes. As a result, access to basic commodities and health care has become a crisis. Civilians who are trapped in some areas of the country are unable to find food (Wsj.com). Some of them who are injured due to the fighting do not access medical care. In some cities such as Homs that have been under siege, civilians were forced to survive on anything, including eating grass. There were no new supplies of food, fuel and medicine, and people could die of hunger, sniper fire, or aerial bombardments (BBC).
The second major effect of the conflict is the plight of refugees; the host nations and the UN find it difficult to provide adequately for their needs. A country such as Jordan has had to bear the burden of providing for the refugees using its resources. Thousands of Syrians crossing the border every day have drained the host countries’ resources.
The third major effect is the spillover of the conflict to neighboring countries. In recent weeks, Iran has become the latest victim of the Syrian conflict. Islamic insurgents operating in the border between Syria and Iraq took advantage of weak and ineffective governance in the region to organize a rebellion against the Iraqi government. The insurgents, the ISIS, seek to establish an Islamic emirate that straddles Iraq and Syria. ISIS has made significant military gains in Iraq in the past one month (BBC; Wsj.org).
Works Cited
BBC. “‘Eating grass to survive’ in besieged Homs.” BBC News, 27 Jan. 2014. Web. 9 July 2014.
.
UNHCR. “Syria Regional Refugee Response.” UNHCR. n.d. Web. 7 July 2014.
.
World Street Journal. “Confronting Syria.” Wsj.com, 9 July 9, 2014. Web. 9 July 2014.
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