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‘Over half of Syrian refugees in Jordan are children’

By Laila Azzeh - Aug 04,2016 - Last updated at Aug 04,2016

Syrian refugees carry water at the Azraq camp, some 100km east of Amman and 20km west of the town of Azraq in Zarqa Governorate, recently (Photo by Muath Freij)

AMMAN — More than half of the registered Syrian refugees in Jordan are below the age of 17, placing "tremendous" pressure on the Kingdom's resources, a UNHCR official said on Tuesday.

Some 338,645 registered Syrian refugees are under 17, making up 51.5 per cent of the registered Syrian refugee population, according to the UNHCR. 

"Having this huge number of young Syrians in Jordan places tremendous pressure on the infrastructure, education, health and work opportunities," UNHCR Spokesperson Ali Bibi told The Jordan Times.

He noted that with the "uncertain" destiny of the refugees, it is "likely that Jordan will host them for a very long time".

“The international community needs to shoulder its responsibilities to Jordanian society,” Bibi said. 

The UNHCR figures showed that until last month, there were nearly 294,548 registered Syrian refugees between the ages of 18 and 59 in Jordan, constituting 44.8 per cent of all registered Syrian refugees.

Those above 60 only number 23,855, accounting for 3.6 per cent of registered Syrian refugees.

The total number of refugees registered with the UNHCR in Jordan since the start of the Syrian crisis stood at 657,048 in July, of whom 141,267, or 21.5 per cent, reside in camps.

The agency figures also showed that Zaatari Refugee Camp hosts 79,220 of the registered refugees, while 54,732 live in Azraq camp and 7,315 in the Jordanian-Emirati Mreijeb Al Fhoud camp.

Meanwhile, some 515,781, or 78.5 per cent, of the registered refugees live in cities outside the camps — 27.2 per cent in Amman, 20.9 per cent in Irbid and 12 per cent in Mafraq.

“There is some stability in the numbers of registered Syrian refugees in Jordan, which is a positive thing,” highlighted Bibi. 

As for gender, 50.7 per cent of the registered Syrian refugees (332,964) are female, according to the refugee agency, which said that 215,827 refugees need special treatment. 

Some 49,907 are children who are at risk, 49,901 are in need of legal or physical assistance, 41,837 have serious medical conditions, 24,663 are women at risk and 21,378 are single parents. 

In addition, 17,583 have disabilities, 5,838 are elderly and at risk and 4,720 are unaccompanied or separated children. 

Regarding the place of origin, 42.2 per cent of the registered Syrians came from Daraa, 16.2 per cent from Homs, 11.9 per cent from the Damascene countryside, 9.8 per cent from Aleppo and 7.5 per cent from Damascus.



Registered Syrian refugees

657,048 Syrians are registered as refugees 

338,645 registered refugees are under 17

294,548 are between the ages of 18 and 59

23,855 are above 60

515,781 live in cities

332,964 are females

49,907 are children who are at risk

17,583 have disabilities

4,720 are unaccompanied or separated children.

Source: UNHCR

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