War on Iraq

Introducing Iraqi Refugee Stories: Voices Missing From Media Describe Life in Exile

Watch "Hiba's Story," one in a powerful new series of video accounts by Iraqis who have had to flee their home.
Beyond the violence and instability of Iraq is the largely untold story of Iraqi displacement and exile and its enormous human consequences. A new website, Iraqi Refugee Stories, is now giving voice to the growing crisis and providing concerned individuals viable avenues to take action.

"The silent story of Iraq has been that of the millions who've been displaced within their country or who have fled to neighboring countries and are now living in limbo. In countries like Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon, Iraqi refugees can't work legally and are often hiding at home for fear of deportation because they're unable to renew their visas," said Jennifer Utz, a videojournalist, founder and creator of Iraqi Refugee Stories. "The media coverage of the issue has largely focused on the plight of military interpreters, while countless other vulnerable individuals have virtually gone unnoticed, such as single mothers, members of minority religions, the elderly and those in need of serious medical assistance."

In this video clip, a young woman named Hiba, whose family fled Iraq in 2003 only to be denied entrance to Jordan, describes the four years they spent living in a tent in Ruwayshed, a refugee camp on the border, saying that she often thinks about her classmates and wonders whether they lived or died.

To learn more, visit Iraqi Refugee Stories.

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