U.S. Aid Runs Through Displacement Camp ‘Gatekeepers’ in Mogadishu

By Dara McLeod

This post originally appeared at ThinkProgress Security.

Yesterday, I met with a man in Mogadishu whose business was the target of a suicide attack. Ahmed is a British-Somali who returned to the country in 2008 and went on to open up several popular restaurants. Last Thursday, two suicide bombers walked into one of those restaurants and killed 15 of Ahmed’s patrons and staff.

RI, HRW, Amnesty Urge Kuwait's Emir to End Bidoon Abuses

By Michael Boyce

Today, RI, Human Rights Watch, and Amnesty International submitted a joint letter to the Emir of Kuwait demanding an end to abuses of the stateless bidoon and the acknowledgement of their citizenship rights. The full letter is as follows:

September 27, 2012

HH Sheikh Sabah IV Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah
Al Diwan Al Amiri
Seif Palace – Building 100
State of Kuwait

Your Highness,

U.S. Needs Clear Strategy to Solve Crises in Africa’s Sahel Region

By Alice Thomas

This post originally appeared at ThinkProgress Security.

Poverty and malnutrition are chronic in the countries of the Sahel, a region in northern Africa stretching from the Atlantic Ocean to the Red Sea, and the surrounding area is hardly a paragon of political stability. This year, however, a confluence of man-made and natural disasters has sent the region into a tailspin.

In Speech to a Challenged UN, Three Tasks for Obama

By Michelle Brown

As the 67th General Assembly opens this week, and as the United Nations gears up for the countless high-level meetings and side events that follow, the enormity of the challenges facing the UN is striking.

Aung San Suu Kyi and the Road Ahead for Burma

By Michel Gabaudan

The political thaw in Burma has advanced so quickly that it is hard to believe Aung San Suu Kyi was here in Washington yesterday, giving her first public speech at the outset of an historic trip to the U.S.

Yet as Suu Kyi was quick to point out in her remarks (which you can view in the video below), the country’s progress to date is fragile and easily reversible. Indeed, she reminded the audience at the U.S. Institute of Peace that she remains but the leader of a small opposition group in Parliament, not the head of government.

Displaced Somalis Lack Resources to Make Better Life

By Dara McLeod

This post first appeared on The Hill's Congress Blog.

The first thing you notice are the colors. The vibrant reds, blues, and greens of the multi-colored domes that dot an otherwise dry and dusty landscape. From a distance, it could almost be described as beautiful. But as we drive closer, the domes transform into the crude and woefully inadequate shelters of thousands of displaced Somalis.

A Friend’s Tribute to Ambassador Chris Stevens

By Michael Boyce

Roya Hakakian is a member of the Board of Refugees International. This post originally appeared at The Daily Beast.

By Roya Hakakian

“Eating on the floor of a house under the ground! The food was an interesting barley paste, covered with very hot tomato soup. Another adventure in Libya.  How are you? C”

RI to the Security Council: Assist and Protect the People of the Sahel

By Michael Boyce

Today, RI submitted an open letter to the members of the UN Security Council. With the UN scheduled to convene a high-level meeting on the Sahel on September 26, the letter puts before the Council recommendations for assisting and protecting vulnerable populations in the region. It urges Council members to ramp up humanitarian and development assistance in the Sahel, and demands that any UN-approved peacekeeping force in the region protect civilians and support humanitarian efforts.

September 13, 2012

Dear Ambassador,

RI Statement on Recent Events in Benghazi

By Michael Boyce

Refugees International is deeply saddened by yesterday’s attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, which resulted in the deaths of Ambassador Christopher Stevens, three American consular staff, and several Libyan security personnel. While many details about the incident remain unclear, it is our firm belief that those who executed this attack in no way represent the Libyan people and their aspirations for peace.

Into the Field: Somalia's Long-Suffering IDPs

By Mark Yarnell

This week, Refugees International is embarking on a field mission to Somalia, where we will assess the conditions of – and gaps in response for – the more than 1.3 million Somalis who are internally displaced. Our team plans to visit IDP settlements in the capital, Mogadishu, as well as in the breakaway regions of Puntland and Somaliland.