Land of Permanent Goodbyes

“The roads were full of dead corpses. I saw dead people with no heads or hands or legs.” -Alia (7 years old)
“We hid ourselves on the mountain for about 8 nights.” -Shahid
“Torture was an everyday routine.” -Abu Yazan

Syrians are experiencing murder, assault and torture everyday due to the growing unrest in Syria. People are fleeing their own homes seeking life and protection, seeking asylum.

How it all started? Where did they go? How many?


Growing up in Syria, 8-year-old Sahar experienced an ordinary, happy childhood. Her father had a good job. Her family life was loving. "The days were beautiful", her mother recalls. But late one night in 2011, her father said, "We have to go."

There are more like Sahar....
Consider 10,000 people like her

Now if 1 pixel = 10,000 refugees...

In 2011, 19,146 Syrians are refugees in 57 different countries.


Syrian Civil war begins on March 15. Economic problems and lack of freedom cause Syrians' resentment towards President Assad's authoritarian rule.


Syrians are fleeing bombing and repression. Lebanon and Turkey are the major destinations for refugees. Za'atari refugee camp opens in Jordan near the Syrian border. Jordan now houses a total of 238,798 refugees over the years


Conflicts increase, other countries join the fight
In March, Syrian refugees total 1 Million. Chemical attacks confirmed, President Assad accused of attacks. In September Syrian refugees total 2 Million.


Nearly half of Syria’s 22 million population is estimated to be affected by the conflict and in need of immediate humanitarian aid. 1 Million refugees are now in Lebanon, estimated to be one quarter of the country's population. Access to people in need becomes more difficult for aid groups. More and more Syrians risk deadly sea journeys to reach safety in Europe. Syrian refugees now total 3 Million in neighbouring countries.
100,000 people have reached Europe


Europe feels the pressure of Syrian refugees. Hungary erects a border to stop refugees from entering Europe. The World Food Program cuts rations to refugees in camps due to funding shortfall. The UN Security Council expresses alarm over the continuing crisis, estimated to have claimed 250,000 lives and displaced 12 Million people. The photo of Alan Kurdi "The body of a lifeless toddler,face down washed up on the Turkish beach in an attempt to reach Greece" shocks the world. Thousands of Refugees reach Greece.


Syria is devastated by years of war. US and Russian delegates negotiate a temporary cessation of hostilities, sanctioned by U.N., to send aid to hard-to-reach populations in Syria. Thousands of refugees are trapped in no man's land as Jordan closes its border. Civilians are caught in crossfire, ceasefire fails. UNHCR delivers vital aid to Aleppo


Syrians seek safety, stability. Moved by the scale of the devastation, UN Refugee Chief calls for faster humanitarian aid for Syrians in desperate need. 5 Million people have already fled conflict in Syria. 58 people are killed in a suspected nerve gas attack.


Nearly 60% of Syrian refugee households now live in extreme poverty (under US$2.87 per person per day), forcing families to make tough choices just to survive. 1,106 children were killed in the fighting - the highest ever number of children killed in a single year

Total=24,743,771 Refugees

These 24 Million Refugees have travelled to 137 countries all around the world seeking safety and stability. Almost equal to the population of Australia in 2019

How many are children?

About 50% of the Refugees are below 18 years of age.

“I have travelled twice before in my life, but the last two times we travelled, we were escaping. This time I am going to live a new life.” -Mahmoud(9 years old)

What is Resettlement?
Resettlement is the transfer of refugees from an asylum country to another country that has agreed to admit them and ultimately grant them permanent settlement. Sometimes Resettlement is the only way to be reunited with your family, to obtain medical aid or to start a new better life as most of the asylum countries are not in a position to fulfill the needs of refugees.

Only 0.9% refugees' application for resettlement were submitted.

Who is resettling the most refugees?

A total of 39 countries have accepted resettlements of refugees from Syria over the years, with USA being the leader. Here white color represents Accepted Submissions, and green color represents Pending Submissions.

USA has consistently resettled more people than rest of the world, but in 2017, for the first time the numbers fell and has steeply decreased over the years.
In 2018, Canada resettled more refugees than USA.

What now?

Sahar now goes to school at a UNICEF camp in Lebanon, but she still misses home and yearns for a happy, stable life. Leaving Syria saved their life, but many Refugees still live an uncertain life in camps, in poverty. Most of the refugees flee to Syria's neighbouring countries and the sudden inflow of refugees from Syria are affecting their economy as well.