The journey of their lives
"Life is good here"
Ismail Arafat and Safirah Omar's refugee journey began in 2003 when they left their conflict-ridden native country of Myanmar for neighboring Thailand. From there smugglers transported them south to Malaysia. The IRC helped the young couple resettle in the United States with their baby daughter. "Life is good here," Ismail says.
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The IRC helps a young Burmese family prepare for a new home in the United States
Story and photos by Peter Biro
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia - The airport in Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia, is abuzz with business travelers and tourists lining up at airline counters or hurrying to their boarding gates. At one of the counters, Ismail Arafat, 25, and his wife Safirah Omar, 21, wait anxiously as they prepare to embark on the journey of their lives. The sun has barely risen outside the terminal and the couple’s eight month-old daughter is still asleep in Safirah’s arms. In less than two hours, they will board a plane bound for their new home in the United States.
Photo Essay: Bound for America