Syrian Refugees: Humanitarian and Security Perspectives
The conflict in Syria has created the largest refugee crisis since World War II. Of the more than 4.5 million Syrian refugees that have been registered by the United Nations, almost 40 percent are under the age of 12. Many are living in extreme poverty with little or no access to health care and education.
The United States and other Western countries have vowed to admit increasing numbers of refugees, but terrorist attacks in San Bernardino, Paris, Cologne, and Jakarta are fueling the anxiety of communities throughout the world. In this RAND Policy Circle briefing, experts address what countries are doing to help abate the humanitarian crisis and ongoing efforts to counter the terrorist threat.
Senior International Policy Analyst, RAND Corporation
Dalia Dassa Kaye (Moderator)
Director, RAND Center for Middle East Public Policy
In this February 2016 congressional briefing, senior political scientist Barbara H. Sude discusses historical examples of radicalization among refugee groups, factors that can increase the risk of radicalization, measures to reduce the risk, and considerations for policymakers and legislators.
More than 700,000 Syrian refugee children are not receiving formal education. Host countries are struggling to create enough spaces to accommodate them in schools, and there are no formal programs to teach children who have missed years of instruction.
The best chance for peace in Syria is for external parties to persuade stakeholders to accept a ceasefire, with further negotiations on a political settlement to follow later. The alternative is the indefinite continuation or even escalation of a devastating war.
Syrian refugees might benefit the Jordanian economy by stimulating growth. Donors and lenders have increased their support to Jordan, in turn offering the government an opportunity to improve the lives of both refugees and Jordanian citizens.