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Twice Displaced: The Plight of Palestinians in Iraq


The Washington Post is reporting today that 50,000 refugee are fleeing their homes a month, and they need help (...) Among all these, Palestinian refugees in Iraq are not in better conditions. In fact, somehow their conditions are worse. Last year, Human Rights Watch issued a report in which they said that the Palestinians refugees who fled Iraq are unlike Iraqi nationals, they cannot enter Jordan on tourist visas and are left into the no man’s land between the Iraqi and Jordanian border. Attacks on a Palestinian neighborhood in Baghdad and lack of protection for Palestinians in Iraq is nothing new. To add insult to injury, UNHCR’s deputy director said: "Palestinians have very limited freedom of movement and no possibility to leave the country."...

[29971]



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Twice Displaced: The Plight of Palestinians in Iraq

Sabbah's blog

January 22, 2007

The Washington Post is reporting today that 50,000 refugee are fleeing their homes a month, and they need help. As is so often the case with Iraq, the U.S. administration has been slow to recognize the problem and even slower to respond.

The U.S. response has been shockingly small. Though it is spending $8 billion a month on the war, the Bush administration has budgeted only $20 million for refugee assistance this year. Only 466 Iraqis have been allowed to immigrate to the United States as refugees since 2003, including 202 last year. Most shameful has been U.S. treatment of translators and drivers who have risked their own and their families’ lives to work for military units in Iraq: Just a handful have been granted asylum, and a special visa program has a six-year waiting list. [Washington Post full article]

What a shame!

Twice Displaced: The Plight of Palestinians in IraqBBC today also reported "warnings of Iraq refugee crisis." BBC said:

…The rest of the world has almost completely ignored the problem and the crisis is coming to a head, spokesman Kasaram Mufarah said.

"Most of the borders of the neighbouring countries of Iraq are very difficult to pass," Mr Kasaram, who co-ordinates the work of aid agencies in Iraq, said…

Earlier this month, the UN refugee body appealed for $60m (£30.8m, 45m euros) in emergency aid for those fleeing the violence in Iraq - the largest long-term displacement of people since the uprooting of Palestinians during the creation of Israel in 1948.

Among all these, Palestinian refugees in Iraq are not in better conditions. In fact, somehow their conditions are worse.

Last year, Human Rights Watch issued a report in which they said that the Palestinians refugees who fled Iraq are unlike Iraqi nationals, they cannot enter Jordan on tourist visas and are left into the no man’s land between the Iraqi and Jordanian border.

Attacks on a Palestinian neighborhood in Baghdad and lack of protection for Palestinians in Iraq is nothing new. To add insult to injury, UNHCR’s deputy director said: "Palestinians have very limited freedom of movement and no possibility to leave the country."

"We are urgently appealing to the Iraqi government and the multinational forces to provide protection and safety or an alternative safe location for this targeted group.

"We also ask the world to stop turning their back and provide a humane solution and safe haven to these people who have no way out."

Ironically, UNHCR has appealed to Israel to allow admission into the occupied territories of Gaza and the West Bank. No constructive response has been received from Israel. The agency said that from resettlement countries, only Canada and Syria had taken Palestinians from Iraq in the past.

To spot more light on the issue, kindly read the following email, which I received from my friend at Baqa’a Refugee Camp blog, and I feel I should share it with you:

Dear friend,

I am writing to inform you, that the Welcome to Baqa’a Refugee Camp website has currently got up a special edition that is dedicated to the plight of Palestinians inside of Iraq.

It has a series of useful articles, which highlight the fact that Palestinians are being targeted and forced to leave Iraq, without much notice or argument by Western governments or the occupation forces.

Once again, Palestinians are being displaced and the question which remains is what is being done? You will find on the site, within the side bar, ways of being able to help, where you can contact the media through our Palestine Media Campaign, along with being able to leave messages of support in our Guest Book.

You can freely use information from the site, as a foundation for writing to the local/national media, your local MP and councillors and enquire what they are doing in defence of the Iraqi Palestinians.

You will also find a variety of useful links to Palestinian support organisations around the world, in our Baqa’a Links sections and a link where donations can made.

All of this can be found on www.baqaacamp.blogspot.com and you can e-mail enquiries to us on baqaarefugeecamp@yahoo.co.uk

Yours in solidarity,

Mr. Hussein Al-alak
Chair
The Middle East Cultural Association
The Iraq Solidarity Campaign

I hope the conditions for these people get eased and the International Community do something to help the innocent Iraqis, Palestinians and all refugees of Iraq.


:: Article nr. 29971 sent on 23-jan-2007 04:12 ECT

www.uruknet.info?p=29971

Link: sabbah.biz/mt/archives/2007/01/22/twice-displaced-the-plight-of-palestinians-in-
   iraq/




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