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BorderWatch:Syria
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Border Camps: "From Fast Death to Slow Death"
RI: World Must Resettle Stateless Refugees from No-Man's-Lands
11/25/2008 4:17 PM ET
A delegation of international refugee advocates has returned from a visit to the notorious border camps on the Syrian-Iraqi border where 3,000 stateless Palestinian refugees are trapped, fleeing sectarian violence in Iraq, but unable to enter Syria without legal status.

Refugees International (RI), the Washington-based refugee rights group, participated in the delegation, and has released a two-page statement describing harrowing conditions in the camps and recommending measures to address the plight of the trapped Palestinian refugees:

Having fled killings, kidnappings, torture, and death threats, about 3,000 Palestinian refugees from Iraq are currently stranded in three camps along the border between Syria and Iraq. Denied asylum and refugee rights, they are extremely vulnerable in poorly situated camps. The Syrian government and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) are both open to third country resettlement on humanitarian grounds and on the basis of individual choice. Therefore, the challenge now lies with both traditional and emerging resettlement countries, in collaboration with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, to accept these Palestinian refugees from Iraq for resettlement, allowing the inhospitable camps to be closed.

Scroll through the two-page report below, or download the PDF here: Palestinians_112408_Final.pdf

Read an eyewitness report from the al-Tanf border camp by RI's vice president, Joel Charny, here, and see all of IraqSlogger's coverage of refugee issues here.

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