Aid inside Syria: Time to Go Small in a Bigger Way

Aid inside Syria: Time to Go Small in a Bigger Way. Refugees International. Daryl Grisgraber. March 15, 2017

Many of the Syrian non-governmental organizations (NGOs) based in Turkey and providing humanitarian aid inside Syria have reached a high level of organizational and operational capacity that was previously absent. The capacity-building initiatives of multiple donors, United Nations agencies, and international non-governmental organization (INGO) partners have helped a number of these groups develop their ability to provide humanitarian responses in accordance with international standards and to be effectively involved in the international coordination structure that was previously out of reach to them. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 8 pages, 233.42 KB].

Troubled Waters: A Snapshot of Security Challenges in the Mediterranean Region

Troubled Waters: A Snapshot of Security Challenges in the Mediterranean Region. RAND Corporation. James Black et al. January 25, 2017.

The US, EU and NATO continue to maintain a significant military presence in and around the Mediterranean, but military capabilities must be nested within a whole-of-government, international approach. The challenges in this region demand unprecedented levels of civil-military and intergovernmental cooperation. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 35 pages, 1.04 MB].

Number of Refugees to Europe Surges to Record 1.3 Million in 2015

Number of Refugees to Europe Surges to Record 1.3 Million in 2015. Pew Research Center. Phillip Connor. August 2, 2016.

A record 1.3 million migrants applied for asylum in the 28 member states of the European Union, Norway and Switzerland in 2015, nearly double the previous high water mark of roughly 700,000 that was set in 1992 after the fall of the Iron Curtain and the collapse of the Soviet Union. Today, Eastern European countries like Kosovo and Albania still contribute to the overall flow of asylum seekers into the EU, Norway and Switzerland, but about half of refugees in 2015 trace their origins to just three countries: Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 36 pages, 1 MB].

The Islamic State and U.S. Policy

The Islamic State and U.S. Policy. Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress. Christopher M. Blanchard and Carla E. Humud. June 14, 2016.

The Islamic State (IS, aka the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, ISIL/ISIS, or the Arabic acronym Da’esh) is a transnational Sunni Islamist insurgent and terrorist group that controls large areas of Iraq and Syria, has affiliates in several other countries, has attracted a network of global supporters, and disrupts international security with its campaigns of violence and terrorism. The U.S.-led coalition military campaign against the Islamic State organization in Iraq and Syria has adapted since 2014, as Administration officials and coalition partners have implemented changes in strategy and tactics that have reduced the area controlled by the group and eliminated thousands of its personnel. While the Islamic State has suffered losses on the ground in Iraq, Syria, and Libya, a series of terrorist attacks attributed to the group or to individuals it has inspired have claimed hundreds of lives on four continents since November 2015, including in the United States. These incidents are creating a more global sense of urgency about further weakening the group and preventing future attacks.

[PDF format, 33 pages, 1.21 MB].

Rethinking Coordination of Services to Refugees in Urban Areas

Rethinking Coordination of Services to Refugees in Urban Areas. RAND Corporation. Shelly Culbertson et al. April 27, 2016.

The study analyzes coordination of international and national entities managing the Syrian refugee response in urban areas in Jordan and Lebanon and provides recommendations on improving coordination strategies and practices. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 148 pages, 0.8 MB].

Iran-North Korea-Syria Ballistic Missile and Nuclear Cooperation

Iran-North Korea-Syria Ballistic Missile and Nuclear Cooperation. Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress. Paul K. Kerr et al. February 26, 2016.

Congress has at times expressed concern regarding ballistic missile and nuclear programs in Iran, North Korea, and Syria. This report focuses primarily on unclassified and declassified U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) assessments over the past two decades. These assessments indicate that there is no evidence that Iran and North Korea have engaged in nuclear-related trade or cooperation with each other, although ballistic missile technology cooperation between the two is significant and meaningful, and Syria has received ballistic missiles and related technology from North Korea and Iran and also engaged in nuclear technology cooperation with North Korea.

[PDF format, 13 pages, 608.0 KB].

A Peace Plan for Syria

A Peace Plan for Syria. RAND Corporation. James Dobbins et al. December 17, 2015.

The paper presents a peace plan for Syria focused on the steps to secure and sustain a ceasefire. It concludes that the external parties that have supported the combatants will need to come together to guarantee and enforce any such ceasefire. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 11 pages, 0.2 MB].

Profile of Syrian Immigrants in the United States

Profile of Syrian Immigrants in the United States. Migration Policy Institute. Jie Zong. November 2015.

Approximately 86,000 Syrian immigrants resided in the United States in 2014, including 2,261 resettled refugees. This fact sheet provides information on the Syrian immigrant population in the United States, focusing on its size, socioeconomic characteristics, and geographic distribution. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[HTML format with a link to the full text PDF file].

A War of Priorities in Syria

A War of Priorities in Syria. YaleGlobal. Chris Miller. December 3, 2015.

The international coalition targeting the Islamic State’s tenuous hold of communities in Syria and Iraq has divided interests that could prolong the war in Syria. “The war is driven by multiple, interlocking layers of conflict,” explains Chris Miller. The priorities vary and desire to maintain influence in the region runs high: The United States, France and Russia disagree about a role for the Assad regime; Turkey worries about Kurds demanding independence; and Shia and Sunni sects are at odds, both at the national level with the rivalry between Iran and Saudi Arabia and among militias fighting on the ground. Mistrust lingers between the West and Russia since the latter invaded Ukraine and annexed Crimea in early 2014. A mixed bag of priorities overshadow the diplomacy required for bringing peace to the region. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[HTML format, various paging].

Education of Syrian Refugee Children

Education of Syrian Refugee Children. RAND Corporation. Shelly Culbertson and Louay Constant. November 23, 2015.

The report reviews education of Syrian refugee children in the three neighboring countries with the largest population of refugees — Turkey, Lebanon, and Jordan — and analyzes four areas: access, management, society, and quality. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 114 pages, 0.8 MB].