IRC in the News
On the morning of Jan. 11, the Greek Coast Guard arrested five volunteers on a boat off the Greek island of Lesbos on charges of human trafficking for facilitating the “illegal entry” of migrants and refugees into Greece.
The volunteers, two Danes and three Spaniards working for the nongovernmental organizations Team Humanity and PROEM-AID, are five of hundreds of people at work on the Greek islands to help rescue and shelter migrants and refugees crossing the Aegean Sea from Turkey to Greece. They say the Coast Guard arrested them as they were trying to tow a rubber dinghy, filled with people, nearing Lesbos’ coast.
The ravages of Syria's civil war include an increase in women who are having abortions and suffering injuries consistent with rape, a top United Nations official said this week.
Babatunde Osotimehin, executive director of the U.N. Population Fund, also said girls are being married off so their families can pass responsibility for them to somebody else. He based his information on reports from medical facilities that work with the U.N. and focus groups.
A donor conference in London, which aimed to get world leaders to dig into their pockets and pledge financial support for Syria, raised $10 billion on Thursday, according to British Prime Minister David Cameron.
This is the most that has ever been pledged in one day for a humanitarian crisis.
"We are facing a critical shortfall in life-saving aid that is fatally holding back the humanitarian effort," Cameron said as he kicked off the event. "And after years of conflict, we are witnessing a desperate movement of humanity as hundreds of thousands of Syrians fear they have no alternative than to put their lives in the hands of evil people smugglers in the search for a future."
More pregnant Syrian women are choosing to have cesarean sections, while others have to give birth without medical help a top United Nations official said, as a record $10 billion was pledged by world leaders to help people affected by the nearly five-year-long crisis.
Babatunde Osotimehin, the executive director of the U.N. Population Fund (UNFPA), was speaking to USA TODAY ahead of the Thursday conference in London attended by 70 leaders and diplomats including Secretary of State John Kerry, British Prime Minister David Cameron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel. The gathering aimed to raise $9 billion to assist displaced Syrians and the target was exceeded by $1 billion.
Civil wars crippling many Muslim states and fuelling a global refugee crisis are driven in part by major struggles within Islam that cannot be ignored, former British Foreign Secretary David Miliband said on Wednesday.
This "implosion" in many Muslim-majority countries has forced people from their homes in "unheard-of" numbers, said Miliband, now head of the New York-based humanitarian group International Rescue Committee.
Miliband spoke at the international affairs think-tank Chatham House in London. He will take part in a major conference on Thursday in the British capital that aims to raise billions of dollars from donors to respond to the Syrian crisis.
"More people are fleeing conflict, they're fleeing conflict significantly in Muslim-majority countries, so the implosion in the Islamic world, in Afghanistan, in the Middle East, is driving it," he said.
Leaving the EU would make the refugee crisis worse for Britain, not better, former U.K. Foreign Secretary David Miliband said on Wednesday.
“Leaving the European Union would not push the refugee problem further away, if anything it would do the opposite,” said Miliband, speaking at the international affairs think-tank Chatham House in London, where he will take part in a major conference on Thursday that aims to raise billions of dollars from donors to respond to the Syrian crisis.
The president of the International Rescue Committee, David Miliband, tells a Chatham House audience that the world under-estimates the seriousness of the refugee crisis. Speaking on Wednesday night, Miliband says a quarter of people currently living in Lebanon are refugees. Leaders from around 70 countries are meeting in London on Thursday to discuss measures and raise money at the Syria Donors Conference