Two million Syrians have now fled their country’s brutal and escalating civil war, according to the UN. Half of the refugees are children, the majority of whom have left in the last 12 months. "The war is now well into its third year and Syria is hemorrhaging women, children and men who cross borders often with little more than the clothes on their backs," UNHCR said in a statement. Another 4.25 million are displaced inside Syria, making it number one in the world for forcibly displaced citizens. A tragic milestone.
More than 97 per cent of Syria's refugees are hosted by countries in the immediate surrounding region, placing an overwhelming burden on their infrastructures, economies and societies. They urgently need massive international support to help deal with the crisis.
UNHCR Special Envoy Angelina Jolie, meanwhile, expressed her dismay at the level of death, damage and danger that has forced so many Syrians to run for their lives.
"The world risks being dangerously complacent about the Syrian humanitarian disaster. The tide of human suffering unleashed by the conflict has catastrophic implications. If the situation continues to deteriorate at this rate, the number of refugees will only grow, and some neighbouring countries could be brought to the point of collapse," she said.
Jolie added that the world was "tragically disunited" on how to end the Syria conflict. "But there should be no disagreement over the need to alleviate human suffering, and no doubt of the world's responsibility to do more. We have to support the millions of innocent people ripped from their homes, and increase the ability of neighbouring countries to cope with the influx."
On August 23rd, the United Nations announced that one million children had been registered as refugees.