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Foreword: Syria in 2018 – in search of solutions
Noor Al Hussein
This important issue of Forced Migration Review draws our attention to the current challenges facing displaced Syrians and the continuing search for solutions. The statistics of Syrian displacement are staggering – and the numbers continue to rise. Half of Syria’s population has been displaced: five and a half million are registered refugees and over six million are internally displaced.
Scenario 1: Continued restricted migration
1 Executive summary
Since the Syrian conflict began in 2011, 11 million people have been internally displaced or have fled to neighboring states. This has put an incredible strain on the hosting societies, particularly in Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq and Turkey. The international community has dispatched more than $17 billion in funding to Syria Response Plans, 300 organizations have implemented projects, and thousands of people have been activated to assist both host communities and refugees themselves to cope with the circumstances.
The Protection of Civilians (PoC) expands the responsibility of the UN Security Council (UNSC) for international peace and security to the internal affairs of conflict-ridden countries. As such, it bolsters the authority of the five permanent members (the P5) in world politics and presents them with a flexible tool for exercising this authority. In addition to shaping their responses to situations like Syria and Libya, the principle of PoC shapes the very dynamics of the Council itself, and ultimately the decisions of conflict actors anticipating international responses.
By Anthony H. Cordesman
War is always a tragedy in human terms, but the four wars in the Middle East have raised the level of that tragedy to truly massive proportions. These costs are summarized in detail in a new analysis by the Burke Chair at CSIS entitled The Human Cost of War in the Middle East: A Graphic Overview.
This analysis is available on the CSIS web site at http://csis.org/files/publication/160203_human_cost_of_mena_wars_0.pdf.
Human movement remains the primary unit of analysis in much theorising on forced migration and humanitarian practice in conflict. Whilst movement is often portrayed as an indicator of vulnerability, sometimes even as a problem per se, I suggest thinking of mobility, taking this broader term to signify the ‘freedom to choose where to be’ (de Haas 2014), as a resource through which one can mitigate the consequences of violence and conflict and access a better life.
These policy recommendations on the Syrian humanitarian crisis are the outcome of a workshop held at the Refugee Studies Centre on 9 December 2015. This workshop brought together researchers and practitioners to present findings from recent research into the perceptions, aspirations and behaviour of refugees from Syria, host community members, and practitioners in Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan.
by Filippo Dionigi
While diplomatic delegations in Vienna meet for the first time since almost two years to address the Syrian situation, we must not forget that the refugee crisis caused by this conflict represents one of the most urgent issues to be addressed, both regionally and globally, writes Filippo Dionigi.
Oct 27, 2015 by Bruce Campbell (CCAFS) and Lisa Goddard (IRI)
New research indicates that the Syrian refugee crisis has roots within climate change. How can we ensure that history does not repeat itself in the coming decades of climate turmoil?
The Arab Spring protests that swept across many parts of the world since 2011 have radically reshaped the social, political and economic environments of the countries in the concerned regions. There has also been a significant increase in radicalisation and extremism, emergence of new groups or transformation of existing groups and new battlefields, which have enhanced terrorist violence affecting various regions and the world at large. The articles in this issue provide a survey of post-Arab Spring events and developments and projections for the future from a range of perspectives.