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button_icon_refugee_headlinesJordan announced that if Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime falls, “Jordan will prevent a mass exodus of Syrian refugees from entering its territory, and will instead create a safe haven inside Syria to protect them.”  Jordan, which is already housing 285,000 refugees, has more than exhausted its resources already, and is concerned that chaos will spill over its border if the regime collapses. [AP]

The UNHCR warns of an escalating refugee crisis in Mali, as over 700,000 have already fled the violence, and “French and African troops escalated their offensive against Islamist forces in the north of Mali on Friday.”  Significant refugee populations are already being housed in Mauritania, Niger and Burkina Faso.  Human rights abuses have become widespread in the Islamist controlled northern regions, as torture and rape have become commonplace.  [Nytimes]

Almost two years after fleeing the violence in Libya, “hundreds of sub-Saharan African and Arab refugees, most of them ex-migrant workers in Libya, are still holed up in a camp on the Tunisian side of the border.”  The camp is slated to close in June, and while the majority of the camp’s inhabitants have been accepted for resettlement, around 400 refugees have not been processed and are living in limbo.  Violent protests have broken out in the past by residents waiting for resettlement.  [IRIN News]

The 18-month conflict between the Burmese government and Kachin rebels that has spurred tens of thousands of refugees to flee their homes has ostensibly come to an end as a cease-fire was reached.  China, which had been worried about an influx of refugees flowing across their border advocated strongly for the cease-fire, though it is not yet clear how long it will last. [Nytimes]

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