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March 22, 2013 | By Christi Parsons and Kathleen Hennessey
AMMAN, Jordan - Standing less than 100 miles from the Syrian border, President Obama on Friday defended his administration's reluctance to use U.S. military force to quell the civil war in that country, saying experience has shown that slow coalition-building and outside pressure will yield better results. “When we are working with the Syrians themselves, so this is not externally imposed but rather something that is linked directly with the aspirations and hopes of the people inside of Syria, it will work better,” Obama said during a visit to neighboring Jordan.
March 18, 2013 | By Justin Salhani, Los Angeles Times
TRIPOLI, Lebanon - Khaled Naaman doesn't hide his disdain for the Syrian government, a widely shared sentiment in this northern Lebanese city, where many harbor dark memories of Damascus' years of military occupation. His impoverished neighborhood, Bab Tabbaneh, stands as a bastion of support for Syrian rebels seeking to oust President Bashar Assad; their tricolor banner flutters from buildings and is spray-painted on walls. The district has also welcomed multitudes of refugees seeking to escape the Syrian conflict.
March 10, 2013 | By Patrick J. McDonnell
BEIRUT - The number of Syrian refugees, who already total more than 1 million, could double or even triple this year if the conflict continues unabated, the United Nations top refugee official said Sunday. “If this escalation goes on … and nothing happens to solve the problem, we might have in the end of the year a much larger number of refugees, two or three times the present level,” U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres told reporters in Ankara, Turkey. On Wednesday, the U.N. announced that the number of Syrian refugees had officially exceeded 1 million.
March 6, 2013 | By Patrick J. McDonnell
BEIRUT -- The number of Syrians who have fled their homeland during the almost two years of violence has officially exceeded 1 million, the United Nations said Wednesday. The milestone had long been anticipated as the influx of refugees has continued inexorably, straining the resources of neighboring nations, especially Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey and Iraq. Inside Syria, the violence is said to have displaced an additional 2 million-plus people from their homes. Aid groups and international observers have been sounding alarms for months about what they call a humanitarian catastrophe, warnings that were repeated Wednesday once the 1-million mark had been reached.
February 21, 2013 | By Nicole Sperling, Los Angeles Times
Bryan Buckley is known as "King of the Super Bowl" - he's a prolific commercial director who frequently helms many of the big game's highest-profile spots for companies including Coca-Cola and Best Buy. But this year he'll be at the Oscars, hopefully with some unusual companions. Buckley directed the Oscar-nominated short fiction film "Asad," a coming-of-age fable about a young Somali boy living in a war-torn fishing village. The project originated as Buckley's tribute to Somalis he met at the Kakuma refugee camp in northern Kenya in 2010, when he was filming a documentary for the U.N. High Commission for Refugees.
February 8, 2013 | By Raja Abdulrahim and Patrick J. McDonnell, Los Angeles Times
BEIRUT - Intense fighting between Syrian government forces and opposition fighters continued Friday around Damascus, the capital, and U.N. officials said about 5,000 people were now fleeing the country daily. Activists reported heavy shelling by forces loyal to President Bashar Assad on opposition-held Ghouta to the east of the city and in neighborhoods to the south in response to an offensive this week by rebel groups trying to remove government checkpoints and seize strategic areas on the capital's outskirts.
February 1, 2013 | By Elaine Woo, Los Angeles Times
Balthazar Korab, an architect-turned-photographer with a wide-ranging eye whose moody, polished images captured the spirit of midcentury modern architecture and celebrated its masters, including Eero Saarinen and Mies van der Rohe, died Jan. 15 in Royal Oak, Mich. He was 86. Korab, who lived in Troy, Mich., died after a long period of decline caused by Parkinson's disease and a stroke, said his son, Christian Korab. A refugee from Communist-controlled Hungary, Korab came to the United States in 1955 and found work as a designer in Saarinen's Bloomfield, Mich., office.
January 22, 2013 | By Nabih Bulos, Los Angeles Times
ZAATARI, Jordan - This sprawling tent city, by far the largest refugee camp for Syrians fleeing their war-ravaged nation, is becoming more crowded by the day, even as operating funds are running low. Winter storms, the most recent of which collapsed tents, turned roads into muddy quagmires and helped spark a riot during food distribution, have compounded the misery for more than 60,000 residents, a number that grows by an average of 1,200 daily....
January 18, 2013 | By Alexandra Sandels and Maher Abukhater, Los Angeles Times
RAMTHA, Jordan - As a child and young adult, the woman now known as Umm Riaan kept the worn photo carefully tucked away. Maybe the fading snapshot of her as a newborn, cradled in her mother's arms, would help unravel her life's central mystery: What had become of her mother? She never quite believed her father's account, that her mother was a "bad" person, had abandoned the family in Syria when Umm Riaan was an infant and later died in a car crash. Umm Riaan had no memory of her mother, but her resolve to find her deepened last spring as clashes raged outside her home in a suburb of Damascus, the Syrian capital, and she faced a defining personal moment: At 22, she was pregnant with her first child.
January 14, 2013 | By Emily Alpert
This post has been corrected. See the note at the bottom for details. Rape is one of the primary reasons that Syrian refugees say they fled their country, “a significant and disturbing feature” of the war raging between rebels and Syrian government forces, the International Rescue Committee said Monday. In a new report based on hundreds of interviews in Jordan and Lebanon, the assistance group said refugees recounted Syrian women and girls being gang-raped in front of their families or assaulted by armed men in public.
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