Now when the Syrian civil war is into its third year, more than 2,1 million people have fled their country to the neighboring states, half a million – to Jordan. About 100,000 live in Zaatari camp – one of the largest refugee camps in the world.
The manager of the camp arranges toy figurines, trucks and houses on a map to illustrate his ambitious vision to turn the chaotic shantytown of 100,000 into a city with local councils, paved streets, parks, and proper electricity and sewage.
Refugees in Zaatari are already increasing putting down roots, creating an elaborate camp economy in a tough, enclosed world.
|A coach’s assistant does a handstand while Syrian children play soccer at the Zaatari camp. (AP Photo/Manu Brabo)|
Here’s a look at the camp in numbers, provided by the United Nations refugee agency:
- Residents: About 100,000
- Households: 13,500 (capacity 15,000)
- Area: 530 hectares (1,310 acres)
- Distance from the Syrian border: 12 kilometers (7.5 miles)
- Established: July 2012
- Districts: 12
- Trailers: 18,000
- Tents: 10,000 (though only about 4,000 families live in tents)
- Shops: 2,500, of those 680 larger ones
- Schools: 3, with more than 16,000 students enrolled
- Boys moving goods in wheelbarrows for a small fee: More than 1,000
- Residents earning income: About 65 percent
- Daily cost of operating the camp: At least $500,000
- Monthly electricity bill for the camp: $500,000
- Daily pita bread distribution: 500,000 pieces
- Daily number of water trucks: 350
- Daily number of sewage trucks: 200
- Daily water use per person: 45 liters
- Hospitals: 3, including one for maternal delivery
- Clinics at the camp : Over 10
- Babies born every month at the camp: More than 200
- Deaths: About 200 since the camp opened
- Number of refugees who have passed through Zaatari: 350,000 to 360,000
The neighboring countries receive 97 per cent of the Syrian refugees. Their leaders have asked international community for assistance in dealing with an ever increasing number of refugees. As of end August the number of people fleeing the war in Syria reached 110,000 in Egypt, 168,000 in Iraq, 460,000 in Turkey. Lebanon has received the biggest amount of refugees so far – 716,000.
Source: Associated Press