EDU Secretary-General receives briefing on Syrian Refugee Crisis from Jordanian Ambassador
The conflict in Syria is the currently the most discussed topic in diplomatic circles.
Geo-politics and historical context mean that the civil war, while devastating in its own right, is also inevitably impacting beyond the borders of Syria and affecting regional stability. Deaths in the conflict are described by United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, thusly:
"The number of casualties is much higher than we expected, and is truly shocking."
Informed estimates put the death toll at over 100,000
Refugee numbers, perhaps the saddest and most prolonged collateral damage of any conflict, are staggering and number in the millions. Over 1 million people have been internally displaced within Syria and total refugee numbers are estimated by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees to have exceeded 2 million.
Syria’s neighbours, including Turkey, Lebanon and Iraq have all taken large numbers of Syrian Refugees. However, the largest contingent has been accommodated by the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan with an estimated 580 thousand with a total of about 1.2 million Syrians living in Jordan. Even before the current crisis Jordan was home to between 650 and 700 thousand Syrians who fled events in Homs and Hama in 1982.
The day after Jordanian Social Development Minister, Reem Abu Hassan, appealed for international assistance to cope with the effort, His Excellency Irving Levance, Secretary-General of EDU, was briefed on the situation by His Excellency Ghassan Majali, the Jordanian Ambassador in Madrid, Spain.
Although the discussions were principally about the effect on the provision of education to displaced peoples, the Ambassador began his briefing explaining that Jordan is well used to its role as a stable safe haven in the region in times of crisis. It is a matter of official record that when Ambassador Ghassan Majali presented his credentials to His Majesty King Carlos I of Spain , the current Monarch made specific mention of the valuable role of His Majesty King Abdullah II of Jordan to bring about peace and stability in the region and the world.
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