Yumnaa Al Khalf – Deir Ezzor
For ten years to this day, young people in Deir Ezzor have been seeking refuge that meets safety conditions and gives them opportunities to work or complete their education. Hundreds of young people left their university seats or jobs after the Syrian war, as security prosecutions by various controlling forces, especially for young people, increased either for their participation in the civil movement demanding regime change in Syria, or against armed factions, or for reasons related to conscription.
Some of the young migrants went to the labor market in the countries of refuge for financial reasons to secure their needs and those of their families in Syria. The demand for work increased with the length of the war in Syria, the depletion of savings and the economic crisis in Syria, which affected the dream of continuing education or obtaining university seats in the diaspora or obtaining work suitable for the educational background or experience of the migrant youth.
This has reflected negatively on Deir Ezzor now, as the province is witnessing a severe shortage of competencies as a result of migration, and this shortage affects key sectors such as education, health and services.
My Children’s Dreams Were Lost
Abu Mohammed, in his sixth decade, lives with his wife in the town of Al-Hessan in the western countryside of Deir Ezzor, talks about his journey of displacement, a journey that is not yet over and led the family to agree to the decision of their two young sons to emigrate from Syria. “We fled from areas controlled by the Syrian government to the countryside to protect my family, especially my sons who have reached the age of conscription. I have two young men now residing in Turkey, one of them was studying medicine in the fifth year and the other who was eighteen years old, and they work in Turkey and have learned the profession of sewing professionally” Abu Mohammed said.
Abu Muhammad continues with sorrow, saying, “I dreamed that they would complete their education and see my son’s clinic in Deir Ezzor.” Abu Mohammed’s sons support the family by sending a monthly sum and without which, according to Abu Mohammed, the family would not have been able to secure basic living necessities, especially health care expenses for their mother.
Mothers Miss Their Children
Abeer, a pseudonym, in her fifties, a displaced woman living in the village of Al Gneina, a mother of three young men, talking about the separation of her young children: “I raised my children, every inch by vow, until they got university degrees, two of them in engineering and the third studied law. When the war started, I found no safe place for them in this homeland except to travel to Turkey and from there to Europe. Currently, they live in Germany, where a country that has preserved their rights and dignity and most importantly, they live safely, despite my great longing to see them and every day I live in the hope that a meeting will bring us together in this world.”
Manal, a pseudonym, is in her fourth decade, a mother of four who lives in the village of Al-Sa’wa in the countryside of Deir Ezzor, lives in good conditions despite longing for her husband and son. Manal says: “My husband and son have been working in a home decoration workshop in Lebanon for seven years. They traveled to Lebanon and my son was not yet fourteen years old because of the lack of work, as we lost our only financial resource due to war and displacement”. “For two years ago, I have not seen my son, he sends us every month a sum to meet our needs fully so that we can live in dignity.”
The destination of Syrian refugees was first to Turkey by virtue of its long borders with Syria, where government sources said that the number of refugees exceeded (3) million people until the end of April 2022, and in Lebanon the number of Syrian refugees is about (860) thousand according to the UNHCR until the end of 2020, and the authorities threaten to return them to Syria. Lebanon has imposed an entry visa for Syrians since the beginning of 2015 to prevent the reception of more refugees.
In Jordan, there are 670,000 refugees registered with UNHCR, thousands of whom have been able to enter the labor market thanks to permits issued by the Jordanian government. Syrians have turned to Europe as a more sustainable option where they can obtain legal residency in addition to the possibility of work. Press sources said that Syrian refugees with protection status in 2020 reached (281) thousand. From another perspective, this migrant group has contributed significantly to the financial support to the remaining families and relatives inside Syria through monthly remittances through hawala offices.
 Jordan issues record number of work permits to Syrian refugees, UNHCR, January 25, 2022.
 The number of refugees with protection in Europe declined in 2020..Syrians in the lead, Enab Baladi, 24 April 2021.