Fleeing to Live: Syrian Refugees in the OSCE Region, Hearing Before the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, One Hundred Thirteenth Congress, First Session, June 13, 2013   [open pdf - 440KB]

In the context of this document, the European 'Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe' will be abbreviated 'OSCE'. This is the June 13, 2013 hearing "Fleeing to Live: Syrian Refugees in the OSCE Region" held before the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe. From the opening statement of Benjamin Cardin: "This hearing is convened as we prepare to commemorate World Refugee Day on June 20th. It is fitting, therefore, that we examine what is quickly becoming a great humanitarian disaster, and determine what more we here in the United States and, indeed, in the entire world community can do to alleviate the suffering of the Syrian people and assist those countries that have opened their borders to the refugees. According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, there are now more than 1.6 million Syrian refugees in neighboring countries, and more than 5.1 million displaced within Syria. An average of 8,000 Syrians are crossing into Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq and Egypt every day. The majority are women and children. The refugees have increased the population of Lebanon by 11 percent, and Jordan by 8 percent. To put the enormity of this crisis in perspective, that would be equivalent in the United States of receiving 25 (million) to 30 million refuges during the past two years. The host countries are under intense political, social and economic pressure. I commend them for keeping their borders open to those fleeing the ongoing violence in Syria." Statements, letters, and materials submitted for the record include those of the following: Anne C. Richard, Michel Gabaudan, Jana Mason, and Yassar Bittar.

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