Leadership Council for Human Rights

~ Feet in the mud, head in the sky ~

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

UNHCR addresses Iraqi refugees at Arab League meeting

The plight of Iraqi refugees was the main concern voiced by United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Antonio Guterres on Sunday at an Arab League meeting in Cairo, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reported Tuesday. After recognizing the “extreme generosity” of Syria and Jordan for hosting almost 2 million refugees combined, Guterres called on the Arab League to play a larger role in assistance.

Naming the situation the “biggest displacement crisis in the Middle East” since 1948, Guterres also addressed a rise in intolerance and xenophobia in developed countries, particularly toward refugees and migrants. “Let us be perfectly clear: refugees are not terrorists; they are first and foremost victims of terror,” he added.

In response to the growing Iraqi displacement crisis, with up to 50,000 Iraqis fleeing their homes each month, UNHCR will host a ministerial-level conference in Geneva in April. The conference will address the humanitarian concerns facing Iraqi refugees, the severity of the crisis, and the need for additional assistance and innovative solutions.

For the full article, click here.
For more on the upcoming UNHCR conference, click here.


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