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Jockeying for position in the humanitarian field: Iraqi refugees and faith-based organisations in Damascus
journal contributionposted on 2023-06-09, 19:27 authored by Tahir ZamanTahir Zaman
The rise in the number of interventions by faith-based organisations in the humanitarian field has reignited debate about the role of religion in the public sphere. This paper presents a nuanced examination of the part played by religious institutions and networks in the strategies of forced migrants in urban contexts. Furthermore, it considers how such organisations work to integrate displaced populations into their new surroundings. Drawing on two case studies and ethnographic fieldwork and in-depth interviews with Iraqi refugees and refugee service providers in Damascus, Syria, carried out between March 2010 and March 2011, it evaluates how Iraqi refugees, as active social agents, utilise religious institutions and networks in conjunction with established international humanitarian organisations to produce a distinctive geography of exile. In addition, it draws attention to how the Syrian state exerts influence over religious actors and how ultimately this affects the decision-making of forced migrants.
Department affiliated with
- Geography Publications
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