A culture of encounter and dialogue: the only way forward in Syria and Iraq
In support of Pope Francis's continued plea for international solidarity in the pursuit of peace in Syria, JRS urges the international community to:
  • prioritise diplomatic efforts and apply pressure on the Syrian government and the armed opposition forces to reach a negotiated solution to the conflict. Consultation opportunities must be created for the participation of Syrian representatives from communities engaged in humanitarian assistance across social, religious and ethnic divides;
  • put pressure on all armed forces to allow humanitarian assistance for communities in need and to refrain from disrupting humanitarian operations and/or hindering the work of personnel;
  • increase financial and technical support for grassroots humanitarian initiatives serving the most vulnerable Syrians in full accordance with international humanitarian principles;
  • ensure that international development donors provide greater technical and financial support to relieve the pressure on host countries and help refugees and vulnerable local households alike. Support should be offered to help counter increasing discrimination and xenophobia towards Syrians. Refugee-hosting countries should be supported to enhance border security and ensure access to international protection for those fleeing violence and persecution in Syria; and
  • offer places to refugee households in the most vulnerable circumstances in resettlement programmes – or temporary visas – in Europe, the United States and other countries willing to share the responsibility for their protection with the immediate neighbours of Syria.
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Lebanon: refugee children counting on school
Beirut, 16 July 2015 -- Hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugee children in Lebanon aren't in school. Some have to work to pay the family bills. Others can't go to school because of transportation costs, difficulty registering, or discrimination.
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Syria: let this fourth anniversary of the war be the last
Beirut, 20 March 2015 – We rang in the New Year with whatever hope we could muster from inside and out, from our families, our communities, even from our enemies. We scraped it together, and we shared it among us in small rations, barely enough to go around. We prayed and dreamed that this would be the beginning of the end of the horror; that 2015 would put the past four years behind us and bring the long-awaited end to the blood on our hands – the lost fathers, the grieving mothers, the broken children, the destroyed cities and the squandered aspirations.
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Syria: water, the simplest gift of all
Homs, 16 January 2015 – Since the ceasefire for the Old City of Homs was signed early in 2014, Homs has no longer occupied the news headlines from Syria. Recovering and restoring the Old City to any semblance of its former self will take years of reconstruction. In the meantime, those who are able to, have returned to their homes to try rebuild what has been destroyed and reclaim their property.
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Syria: cries for peace
Beirut, 2 December 2014 – On the day the United States announced they would conduct air strikes against militants in Iraq, a Syrian woman here asked a Jesuit Refugee Service staff member a seemingly simple question: "Do you think a Syrian life has less value than anyone else's?"
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Syria: examining the role of women from a humanitarian perspective in response to conflict
Syria, 13 October 2014 During the anti-apartheid years in South Africa, the phrase "strike a woman and you strike a rock" was popularised by the growing involvement of women in the struggle. In Syria, the role of women has taken on a less aggressive, but no less significant role.
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Syria: between fear of violence and the struggle to survive
Beirut, 3 October 2014 – The humanitarian crisis in two of the three principle cities in Syria has deteriorated dramatically in the last two months, according to Jesuit Refugee Service teams on the ground.
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Middle East: protection of Syrian civilians must be world's priority
London, 24 September 2014 – Any further intervention in the Middle East must address the suffering of Syrian civilians, a global coalition of 39 leading human rights and humanitarian organisations said today. Ahead of the UN General Assembly meeting in New York, the #WithSyria coalition – comprising Amnesty International, the Jesuit Refugee Service, Save the Children and other – urges world leaders, whoever they support in the conflict, to make clear that they are on the side of civilians.
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Syria: working under principles of neutrality, non-violence and inclusiveness
Chicago, 15 April 2014 – Loyola University Chicago and ART WORKS Projects for Human Rights hosted the symposium, 'Sanctuary and Sustenance: Syria and the Plight of Refugees' on Monday, 7 April. Scholars, faculty, practitioners and refugees examined the current political crisis in Syria from a range of perspectives and disciplines. During the day-long symposium Angela Wells spoke on behalf of the Jesuit Refugee Service about humanitarian assistance and religious intervention.
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Voices of Europe unite to help Syrian refugees
Brussels, 7 March 2014 – The Jesuit Refugee Service, as part of the ECRE coalition of more than 100 NGOs across Europe, has launched Europe Act Now calling on European leaders to protect refugees fleeing the Syrian war.
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USA: the Jesuit Refugee Service stands with Syria
Washington DC, 7 March 2014 – The 15 March marks the third anniversary of the Syria crisis. The Jesuit Refugee Service USA is joining #WithSyria, and with millions of people and other organisations across the globe, to shed light on the desperate situation and urge immediate and unfettered access for humanitarian aid to protect the hundreds of thousands of innocent children and families now under siege. The world can no longer remain indifferent to their plight.
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