BLOG

July 14, 2014 Sarnata Reynolds Congress, U.S. Administration, Americas, Neglected Crises, Protection & Security

More than 90,000 unaccompanied children are expected to arrive at the U.S. border this year. More than 20,000 of them will be of Mexican origin, but because they are being summarily turned around at the border little is known about their decision to undertake the journey alone, or the circumstances under which they traveled.

May 23, 2014 Sarnata Reynolds Congress, U.S. Administration, United Nations, Americas, Humanitarian Response, Neglected Crises

My colleague Garrett Bradford and I are currently in Mexico, where we are meeting with people displaced by organized crime, gangs, and other armed actors throughout the country, including in Tijuana, Mexico City, Veracruz, and Sinaloa. No one knows how many people have been forced to leave their homes in Mexico due to extortion, kidnapping, forced disappearances, or murders, but it is widely reported to be more than 100,000 people. 

December 09, 2013 Alice Thomas Climate Displacement, Americas

Two weeks ago, the High Court of New Zealand rejected a Kiribati man’s request for asylum as a “climate change refugee.” Ione Teitiota argued that he should be entitled to protection as a refugee because rising sea levels and environmental hazards caused by climate change were endangering his life on Kiribati, a low-lying island nation in the South Pacific. 

November 08, 2013 Marcy Hersh Africa, DR Congo, Haiti, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Turkey, Americas, Humanitarian Response, Asia, Middle East, Women & Children

There is always a convenient excuse. In Haiti, we don't have the time. In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, we don't have the funding. In the Syrian refugee response, we don't have the experts. Somehow, there is always a pat answer to why we, the humanitarian community, fail to protect women and girls in emergency after emergency.

October 21, 2013 Alice Thomas Africa, Climate Displacement, Americas, Humanitarian Response, Asia, Middle East

Tomorrow at 6pm Eastern time, I’ll be participating in “24 Hours of Reality,” the third annual live-streamed show organized by the Climate Reality Project, founded by former Vice President Al Gore.

October 07, 2013 Guest Climate Displacement, Haiti, Americas, Humanitarian Response

It’s been over three years since the earthquake in Haiti devastated the capital Port-au-Prince, killing an estimated 230,000 people and leaving 1.2 million homeless.

October 04, 2013 Jamie Armstrong Dominican Republic, Haiti, Americas, Statelessness, Women & Children

Juliana Dequis Pierre is 29 years old and lives in Yamasa in the Dominican Republic (DR). She attended school until the fifth grade but cannot read. Juliana has four children and works as a maid, earning the equivalent of $140 a week. And as of two weeks ago, she is stateless.

May 31, 2013 Alice Thomas Africa, Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Climate Displacement, Colombia, Mali, Myanmar, Niger, Pakistan, Somalia, Thailand, Americas, Humanitarian Response, Asia, Middle East

Right now, the shell-shocked residents of Moore, Oklahoma, are grappling with the loss of 24 lives and the destruction of entire neighborhoods following a devastating tornado on May 20. Meanwhile, across the globe, tens of thousands of people in Bangladesh and Burma are returning to damaged homes and villages in the wake of Cyclone Mahasen, which thankfully proved more merciful than anticipated.

May 13, 2013 Guest Haiti, Americas, Humanitarian Response, Women & Children

Three decades ago, the Center for Disease Control famously created its own “4H Club” to signify the four groups most at-risk for HIV/AIDS: homosexuals, hemophiliacs, heroin users, and Haitians. For Haiti, the implications of the label were particularly high – a dramatic dip in tourism, a near halt of foreign importing of Haitian goods, and, fueled by subsequent poverty, a heightened prevalence rate among Haitians.

May 01, 2013 Guest Africa, Americas, Asia, Middle East, Women & Children

Last month, flanked by the United Nations Special Representative of the Secretary General on Sexual Violence in Conflict Zainab Bangura on one side and spokesperson Angelina Jolie on the other, and with members of the G8 group of nations fanning out in support from behind, UK Foreign Secretary William Hague stood at a press podium to deliver a pledge on behalf of the G8 group of ministers to “end sexual violence in conflict.” 

April 17, 2013 Guest Africa, Burkina Faso, Climate Displacement, Colombia, Mali, Niger, Pakistan, Americas, Asia

Crisis after crisis, natural and climate change-related disasters such as floods, droughts, and storms have displaced people from their homes in countries around the world. Though a causal link between any weather event and climate change is difficult to prove, climatologists have long believed that climate change will result in an increase in extreme weather events. Floods, droughts, and storms almost always impact the lives of individuals, forcing them to flee their homes as a result of safety or reduced food supply, among other factors.

January 08, 2013 Alice Thomas Africa, Burkina Faso, Climate Displacement, Mali, Niger, Americas, Asia, Middle East

The day Hurricane Sandy slammed into the East Coast, I was in Mali, a country in West Africa’s Sahel region. As a native New Yorker, I was stunned and dismayed to see pictures of the flooded streets and tunnels of Manhattan, of destroyed homes and schools on Staten Island, and of thousands of my fellow New Yorkers displaced and in shelters. But I was even more struck by the indiscriminate nature of what I was witnessing both in Mali (one of the world’s poorest countries) and the United States (one of its richest): massive humanitarian emergencies resulting from more extreme weather.

December 10, 2012 Avy Mallik Americas, Asia, Statelessness

Exactly one year ago, a historic summit took place in Geneva on the rights of refugees and stateless people. On December 9, 2011, the United States and 154 other nations met to discuss the importance of the 1951 Refugee Convention and the 1954 and 1961 Statelessness Conventions. But what made the conference historic was not the debate, but the pledges.

September 20, 2012 Michelle Brown Africa, Burkina Faso, DR Congo, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Libya, Mali, Myanmar, Niger, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria, Yemen, Americas, Humanitarian Response, Asia, Middle East, Protection & Security

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.

September 12, 2012 Michael Boyce Libya, Americas, Humanitarian Response, Middle East, Protection & Security

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.

August 30, 2012 Garrett Bradford Climate Displacement, Colombia, Americas, Humanitarian Response

In February 2012, RI visited the riverside community of Gambote, in Colombia's Bolívar Department. We spoke with Manuel Suárez, a local indigenous leader who had been displaced by violence in neighboring Córdoba Department. But as Manuel told us in the video below, his community needed to be relocated again – this time because of devastating floods in the area.

August 24, 2012 Marc Hanson Colombia, Americas, Humanitarian Response, Protection & Security, Women & Children

Steady, gainful employment is an important part of of resolving Colombia’s IDP crisis. In most cases of forced displacement in Colombia, families flee their homes in rural areas for the relative safety (and anonymity) of larger cities. In the process, they leave behind their agricultural livelihoods, assets, and social networks.

July 31, 2012 Marc Hanson Colombia, Americas, Humanitarian Response, Protection & Security

This post originally appeared at The Hill's Congress Blog.

“I will never be the same. I am not the same as before. That’s the hardest thing.” With these lines Paula, one of Colombia’s more than 4 million internally displaced persons (IDPs), started to recount the most excruciating part of her life’s story.