Iraqi Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons: A Deepening Humanitarian Crisis? [Updated August 15, 2008] [open pdf - 153KB]
"This report provides an analysis of the current crisis, including the conditions for those displaced in Iraq and the refugee situations in Syria, Jordan, and elsewhere. It also provides information on the U.S. and international response and examines refugee resettlement options in the United States. Aspects of this crisis that may be of particular interest to the 110th Congress include a focus on an immediate response (providing humanitarian relief funding), examining resettlement policies, and developing a strategy to manage the displaced, particularly within Iraq." "During 2004-2007, the violence and insecurity resulting from the ongoing sectarian strife, terrorism, and insurgency in Iraq produced substantial civilian displacement in different parts of the country. Many of Iraq's neighbors fear that they are being overwhelmed by refugees who have fled over Iraq's borders. There are heightened concerns about the absorptive capacity of neighboring countries, whether they can provide adequately for the populations that have moved across borders, and the impact of refugee flows on stability in general. While there is clear evidence of limited improvement in Iraq -- decreasing violence, reduced levels of displacement, and a handful of returns in a few governorates -- the situation in general remains precarious and requires sustained attention. UNHCR estimates that the number of Iraqis displaced within Iraq who need food and shelter exceeds 1 million people."
CRS Report for Congress, RL33936