Residents of Yida Camp Face Difficult Choices

By Caelin Briggs

Nila is tired. Two weeks ago, she arrived in Yida camp, South Sudan, with her three young children in search of safety and food. Like the many people that fled before her, Nila and her family escaped from their homes in the middle of the night after relentless bombings by the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) made it impossible for them to harvest their crops. As they hid in the caves away from the bombs, hunger set in, and finally they were forced to flee.

S. Sudan's Yida Camp: No Place to Raise a Child

By Marcy Hersh

Samuel totters on uneven footing in the doorway of the thatch hut and gapes, open-mouthed, at the strangers in his house. He’s just a year old and has lived his entire life here in Yida, a transit camp for refugees in Unity State, South Sudan.

My Refugees International colleague and I perch on the edge of the bed that Samuel shares with his mom, Halima. When Samuel starts to whimper, Halima rises from her metal chair, held together by twine, scoops up the naked baby, and then returns to her chair and continues her story.

U.S. Immigration Reform May Finally Help Stateless People

By Sarnata Reynolds

This post originally appeared on UN Dispatch.

Thousands Are Cut Off From Aid in South Sudan

By Caelin Briggs

Today, Marcy Hersh and I are en route to South Sudan, where we will spend the next three weeks assessing the conditions for displaced people in two of the harshest and most isolated areas of the country. In Jonglei and Unity states, an estimated 180,000 displaced persons are taking shelter in camps, with host families, and hiding in the bush, often with little to no support from the UN or humanitarian agencies.

As Abyei Deadline Passes, Risks Rise for Mediators - and Civilians

By Caelin Briggs

Wednesday, December 5th, marked the deadline given by the African Union (AU) for the governments of Sudan and South Sudan to reach agreement on the contested border state of Abyei.

Throughout repeated rounds of Juba-Khartoum negotiations (and despite the efforts of the AU and U.S. mediators), the dispute over Abyei has remained intractable. As Wednesday’s deadline came and passed, the two countries remained just as gridlocked as they were in early September, when this most recent round of talks began.

S. Sudan Takes Vital Step to Prevent Statelessness

By Sarnata Reynolds
South Sudan opened its second Nationality Directorate on November 28, and the government expects that offices will be opened in all 10 South Sudanese states by the new year. This is a tremendous step for the world's newest country and should greatly decrease the risk of statelessness.

We Can Do More. We Must Do More.

By Caelin Briggs

I am excited to be joining RI as the new advocate for DRC and the Sudans. With the presidential election now approaching, and renewed Congressional interest in the conflicts of Sub-Saharan Africa, it is an exhilarating time to be joining the organization. 

In Speech to a Challenged UN, Three Tasks for Obama

By Michelle Brown

As the 67th General Assembly opens this week, and as the United Nations gears up for the countless high-level meetings and side events that follow, the enormity of the challenges facing the UN is striking.

As Olympics Begin, a Reason to Celebrate

By Michael Boyce

By now you may have heard that refugee marathoner Guor Marial, who was featured on this blog last week, has been allowed to compete as an independent athlete at the London 2012 Olympic Games. The decision, which was confirmed to RI in a letter from International Olympic Committee President Jacques Rogge, is a triumph for Guor and his supporters - some of whom worked tirelessly for months to make his Olympic dream a reality. 

Sudan Refugee's Olympic Dreams in Jeopardy

By Michael Boyce

This week, thousands of athletes and staff are arriving in London for the 2012 Summer Olympics, which kick off on July 27. But there is one deserving athlete whose invitation hasn't yet arrived. His name is Guor Marial, and last month he qualified for the Olympic marathon with the blistering time of 2 hours, 12 minutes, and 55 seconds.

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