Immigrant Crisis (03:49)
Refugees are held for illegal entry into Cyprus. Osman Kayne's asylum application was rejected; he has been imprisoned for three years without a trial. View images of Iraqi refugees waiting at the Syrian border.
Saita Zainab Camp (03:37)
Over one million people fled the Iraq War. Akila Hadi and her daughters came to Damascus in 2005. UNHCR representative Laurens Jolles says Syria is the only nation to welcome refugees; restrictions have recently tightened. The UNHCR helped 200,000 people in 2007.
Escaping Sectarian Violence (03:41)
Weroudi Kaoudi's Sunni family fled a Shiite neighborhood in Baghdad for Damascus after she survived a car bomb. The UNHCR characterizes her case as difficult; her application for EU asylum is pending. Refugees are frustrated when food distribution days change suddenly.
Profiting from Refugees (02:30)
Omar from Iraq describes a friend charging $14,000 to transport people from Syria to Europe and provide them with visas. Baghdad is too dangerous to live. Iraqis cannot travel to other Arabic countries; they travel to Europe via Turkey.
Turkey's Immigration Bridge (04:13)
Cerem Ozturk and Oktay Durucan discuss Turkey as a transitional place for immigrants from the Middle East, Africa, and Asia; most continue to Europe. In 2007, illegal crossings to Cyprus began. A Syrian prisoner describes his journey to the Turkish area of Cyprus.
Overwhelming Resources (03:51)
Refugees are considered legal once they apply for asylum on European ground, and are entitled to government benefits—but Cyprus cannot provide for all. The EU asks Turkey to take responsibility for refugees, who are imprisoned without travel documents.
Multicultural Nicosia (05:09)
Lefteris Anastasiou discusses his dual homelands of England and Cyprus. Elementary students come from the Philippines, Lebanon, Georgia and Russia; Solon Antartis and Pampos Charalambous discuss teaching and administering children of economic migrants.
Economic Migrants (03:07)
Mrs. Foteini came to Cyprus in search of a better life. A teacher in Georgia, she cleaned houses and learned Greek. Legal labor contributes to 10% of Cypriot GDP.
In 1992, government policies decreased trade union power to encourage cheap immigrant labor. Immigrants must be employed to stay; they pay social security but cannot take benefits. Most construction workers are underpaid illegal aliens without rights.
Human Rights Violations (06:25)
A 2007 Amnesty International report says Cyprus detains immigrants and asylum seekers without legal representation or a trial. Cypriot authorities tried to deport Kayne to Sierra Leon illegally; he eventually found work and housing. In 2008, the European Parliament passed legislation allowing immigrants to be detained up to 18 months and restricted entry to European territory for five years.
Credits: Hope Against Hopeless (01:13)
Credits: Hope Against Hopeless
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