International Rescue Committee (IRC)

Iraqis face a precarious future

An estimated 1.3 million Iraqis remain displaced in their own country as the U.S. military mission in Iraq comes to an end. Another 1.6 million have fled to Syria, Jordan and other counties in the region. The International Rescue Committee (IRC) continues to provide a safe haven to these displaced people  and other vulnerable refugees forced to flee their homes due to violence and persecution.

Since the start of the Iraq War in 2003, 60,000 Iraqi refugees have been resettled in the United States through the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program, while many more, including innocent citizens whose lives are in danger, suffer delays because of multiple security checks. The integrity of the resettlement program is paramount and thorough security screening is an important component of the admissions process. At the same time, it is imperative that vulnerable refugees, particularly Iraqis in light of the U.S. troop withdrawal, have access to resettlement.  
 
In Fiscal Year 2010, 18,016 Iraqi refugees were resettled in the U.S., while in FY 2011 only 9,388 were granted sanctuary. Iraqis in imminent danger because of their work with the U.S. government can apply for Special Immigrant Visas  (SIVs). Congress can grant up to 20,000 SIVs through the end of FY 2012, or 5,000 annually. However, between FY 2008, when the program began, and FY 2011, only 2,100 SIV’s have been granted. The underutilization of the SIV and the new security checks represent a major challenge for Iraqi refugees.   
 
My Iraqi colleagues who work in the IRC’s refugee resettlement offices help to shine a spotlight on the ongoing crisis in Iraq by sharing personal accounts of the dangers and threats they have faced. Their journeys from their native country to a distant land are a testament to their strength and resilience.
 
In their narratives, Noor and Zaineb recount how the war separated them from loved ones and the concerns they have for the safety of their families who remain behind. They remind us that displaced Iraqis and Iraqi refugees continue to face an uncertain and precarious future. We must not forget their urgent protection needs.
1 comment

Comments

I totally agree with you,

I totally agree with you, that, unfortunately, the US and UN even the International aid didn't reach most of the war and post-war Iraqi national victims. I know some families under this category and they are still vulnerable and in bad need for all kinds of support. I can even provide you with pictures. I tried to collect some funds and necessities for their living but this is not a permanent nor sustainable source of living. I wish I could find any way through which I can raise their case and find a radical solution for their miseries. Now I got a critical case of a family whom their house was destroyed by Baghdad Municipality agents as it was "illegally located tent thing"!!!!!! The few money and stuff we collect every now and then do not secure a shelter for this family. What should we do for them? This case is one of thousands of such cases all over the country. Wishing to get your prompt advise..

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