Newsroom

With a global staff of more than 1,500 worldwide, the Jesuit Refugee Service is a key source for journalists who seek information on the latest issues on forced displacement in the world. Journalists visiting this site have access to press releases, latest news affecting refugees and other forcibly displaced persons, updates from JRS projects and activities, speeches, special features and more.

JRS programmes are implemented through more than 50 country offices and a large network of partners, and annually benefit more than 900,000 people worldwide.

Our global network of regional communications officers, based throughout Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America, can provide updates in emergencies and access to field staff.

Regional staff can lend insight into JRS programmes and advocacy priorities and provide detailed information on current global crises.

For media inquiries or to arrange an interview, please contact our communications staff.

For all other inquiries, please call +39 06 689 77609

JRS welcomes Education Cannot Wait fund
Rome and Washington DC, 24 May 2016 – The Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) is gratified the international community made a commitment to education Monday at the World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul. The Education Cannot Wait fund follows on the heels of the JRS Global Education Initiative launched last December.
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Education is a life-saving intervention for refugees
Washington, DC, 19 May 2016 -- In the new report Providing Hope, Investing in the Future: Education in Emergencies & Protracted Crises, the Jesuit Refugee Service confirms that education is a life-saving intervention for children and adolescents who are forcibly displaced from their homes. JRS organises educational and recreational activities to heal trauma, promote human dignity, and build skills.
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NGOs urge government of Kenya to reconsider intended closure of refugee camps
Nairobi, 10 May 2016 -- Despite  huge economic and social pressure, Kenya continues to host close to 600,000 refugees and asylum seekers from neighbouring countries. Fifty-six percent of this current refugee population in Kenya comprises women, children and youth who are particularly vulnerable to exploitation and abuse while in displacement. However, JRS and other NGOs worry that the recent position assumed by the government of Kenya, which disbands the Department of Refugee Affairs and indicates that this will be followed by the closure of Dadaab and Kakuma camps, will have unfortunate, far-reaching implications for the thousands of refugees and asylum seekers who have called Kenya a place of refuge.
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Syria: JRS condemns every form of violence
Beirut, 3 May 2016 – Jesuit Refugee Service is unequivocal in condemning every form of violence- and particularly violence on civilian populations. Nonviolence, we believe, is the ONLY way for a sustainable and universal peace.
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JRS Europe policy analysis: the EU-Turkey deal
Brussels, 3 May 2016 – "The EU-Turkey deal represents a seismic shift in the European Union's policy towards forced migrants and its international protection obligations," concludes the extensive policy analysis of the EU-Turkey deal published by JRS Europe today.
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JRS and Rotary discuss how to build stronger communities with refugees
Rome, 22 April 2016 – On 29 April, at LUMSA University, Fr Thomas H Smolich SJ, the Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) International Director, will speak on a panel discussion hosted by Rotary International to discuss the needs and challenges of refugees as well as sustainable solutions. Fr Smolich will speak alongside Carlotta Sami, Spokeswoman of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees office for Southern Europe, and John Hewko and K.R. Ravindran, General Secretary and President of Rotary International respectively, to discuss the theme “Helping refugees to start over.”
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Global: faith leaders urge Cameron and Obama to help Syrian refugees
Rome, 22 April 2016 – President Obama is in the UK for talks with Prime Minister Cameron regarding the upcoming 23 June EU referendum to decide Britain's membership in the EU. They will also discuss the fight to oust the Islamic State. In this letter below, 28 faith based leaders including representatives from the Christian, Hindu, Jewish and Muslim religions call the two leaders to consider Syria in these talks.
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Italy: Pope tells JRS staff to continue walking with refugees
Rome, 19 April 2016 – If host countries properly welcome refugees and facilitate their integration into society, forced migration will no longer be an emergency, according to the Jesuit Refugee Service Italy (Centro Astalli) 2015 annual report. Today, to present the Centro Astalli 2015 annual report at Teatro Argentina in Rome, Pope Francis – through a video message – encouraged Centro Astalli to continue its work with refugees, and Romano Prodi, former EU Commission president and Italian Prime Minister, spoke about the economic and political need to welcome refugees.
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Greece: Pope to refugees – “you are not alone”
Rome, 17 April 2016 – In his heartfelt visit to the Greek island of Lesbos yesterday, Pope Francis stood in solidarity with refugees and migrants, reminding them “you are not alone.” However, the Pope did not only draw attention to this grave tragedy through words, but through action. On his trip back to the Vatican, he brought with him a dozen Syrian Muslim refugees – including six children – personally showing the EU and the world the values of welcome and accompaniment.
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Greece: Pope to visit Lesbos, a symbol of hope for refugees
Rome, 12 April 2016 – At a time when hundreds of thousands are risking their lives trying to reach safety in Europe, the Jesuit Refugee Service is very pleased that Pope Francis will visit the Greek island of Lesbos, a major transit point, this Saturday, 16 April, to confront the emergency situation of refugees and the need for international solidarity among governmental and non-governmental actors head on.
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EU: the risks of a dirty deal with Turkey
Brussels, 5 April 2016 -- The European Council on Refugees and Exiles, of which the Jesuit Refugee Service is a member, joins the calls for an immediate halt to the return of refugees from Greece to Turkey, scheduled to happen on 4 April. Opposition to implementation of the EU-Turkey agreement is mounting across Europe, following reports by Amnesty International detailing the illegal practices already taking place. On 1 April, the organisation published evidence of large-scale forced returns, including of children, from Turkey to war-torn Syria, an action illegal under Turkish, EU and international law. Last week, the organisation documented the forcible return to Kabul of around 30 Afghan asylum seekers, who were denied access to asylum procedures.
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EU: humanitarian visas one step closer
Brussels, 4 April 2016 -- On 16 March, the Members of the European Parliament's Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs committee voted in favour of introducing European humanitarian visas within the EU Visa Code. This means that member states will be able to issue such visas for asylum seekers, while allowing them to reach European territory in safe and legal manner. Once they arrive in Europe, they will be able to launch their asylum application.
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Europe: EU-Turkey deal violates international law
Rome, 24 March 2016 -- The Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) is deeply concerned by the deal reached by the EU and Turkey regarding refugee relocation and resettlement over the weekend. The decision to push refugees and migrants back to Turkey is a violation of the international law to provide protection, and contrary to EU principles of guaranteeing the right to claim asylum and prohibiting collective expulsions.
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EU: NGOs call European Council to protect refugees
Brussels, 15 March 2016 - The Jesuit Refugee Service is a member of the European Council for Refugees and Exiles (ECRE), a network of 90 NGOs working to promote human rights, sustainable solutions and the implementation of policies that support both of these. The following is a letter from the Secretary General of ECRE to the Heads of the European Council and the European Commission, regarding the upcoming EU-Turkey summit where the leaders of various European states will meet with Turkish officials to discuss migration and the refugee crisis. The summit will take place on 17 and 18 March.
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Syria: five years on, time for diplomacy to deliver
Beirut, 13 March 2016 -- "We have reached another sad commemoration; we feel exhausted and with little hope left. A Christian's way of proceeding is never to despair. We must continue to help every single Syrian brother and sister in need, until the massacres end," said Fr Nawras Sammour SJ, Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) Syria Director, as the Syrian conflict enters its sixth year.
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Ethiopia: refugees share stories, express concerns with top UN official
Addis Ababa, 11 March 2016 – The Jesuit Refugee Service was honoured to receive the President of United Nations General Assembly, Mogens Lykketoft, at the JRS Refugee Community Centre in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia last week.
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EU: Turkey plan disregards human rights
Brussels, 11 March 2016 – Earlier this week heads of EU Member States met the Prime Minister of Turkey to try to find solutions to the humanitarian crisis playing out in the Aegean. The resultant plan dubbed 'one for one' envisages treating people fleeing war and state failure like parcels and would be a huge blow to human rights and the rule of law in Europe if ever implemented.
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Sri Lanka: joining the anti-landmines treaty, a good step towards durable solutions
Rome, 9 March 2016 – Seven years after the end of the 26-year long conflict, on 3 March 2016, Sri Lanka agreed to accede to the anti-personnel mine ban treaty, also known as the Ottawa Convention. The Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) welcomes this move as a first good step towards durable solutions for those who have suffered war and violence. The northern and eastern provinces in Sri Lanka have been severely affected by land mines and explosives due to the conflict and there are a number of demining agencies working in Sri Lanka already.
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Vatican City: International Women's Day – knocking on the Church's door
Vatican City, 9 March 2016 – Yesterday, at the Casina Pia IV in the heart of the Vatican, powerful women made their voices count this International Women's Day at the Voices of Faith event co-hosted by the Fidel Gotz Foundation and the Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS). The event's theme "Mercy requires courage" stemmed from the Jubilee Year of Mercy and Pope Francis's call for believers to make their mercy  a concrete reality as opposed to an abstract idea.
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'What women want' -- Voices of Faith storytelling event in the Vatican
Vatican City, 4 March 2016 -- For International Women's Day on 8 March, at the Casina Pio IV in the heart of the Vatican, the Voices of Faith storytelling event will take place. With the theme "Mercy requires courage," it will feature and celebrate extraordinary faithful women from nine countries on five continents who exemplify the courage required to live merciful lives. 
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Voices of Faith celebrating Intl. Women’s Day in the Vatican
Voices of Faith and Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) invite you to learn more about the 3rd Voices of Faith female storytelling festival and this year's motto “Mercy requires Courage”. At this occasion the partnership between Voices of Faith and JRS based on their common values will officially be announced: The importance of education at large, particularly for females. Education is a fundamental key in improving the social and economic situation for women and their families.
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Australia: harsh border policies not the whole story
Sydney, 25 February 2016 – "The issue of refugees and asylum seekers in urban areas will become one of our main challenges in the coming years along with the inter-religious and inter-faith element of it," said Fr Bambang A Sipayung SJ, Director Jesuit Refugee Service Asia-Pacific.
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Ethiopia: education promotes self-reliance
Dollo Ado, 17 February 2016 -- Kaadi Ali Ibrahim used to measure his assets in livestock – camels, cattle and goats – but his new home in Melkadida refugee camp does not offer much space to herd or trade animals. Those who flee must leave not only their homes, but their whole livelihoods.
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South Sudan: education in response to a grave emergency
Nairobi, 11 February 2016 –"I've lived through three decades of war and I've never experienced as much violence as I did a few weeks ago," said South Sudanese Sister Elizabeth Waraga, Jesuit Refugee Service Education Coordinator working in Yambio, South Sudan. Last month heavy gun fire between government and opposition forces rained on the small South Sudanese town of Yambio and Sister Elizabeth and her colleagues hid for hours.
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Global: International Day of Prayer and Awareness for Human Trafficking
Rome, 8 February 2016 – The millions of refugees who cross international borders seeking protection often find themselves in danger and devoid of the human rights guaranteed to them by international law. Whether en-route through lawless territory, struggling to survive in under-resourced camps or homeless in inhospitable urban centres, many refugees are ripe for exploitation by criminal groups.
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