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The Caucasus

Where do you work in the region?

The Bureau works with many organizations to provide assistance to the approximately 1,000,000 displaced persons living in the Caucasus. The Bureau's most recent funding opportunities occurred in Russia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia

What are the major challenges for refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the region?

In the Caucasus, many people have been displace since the dissolution of the former Soviet Union. This past year, a renewal of conflict in South Ossetia generated additional IDPs, while calling into question the future of the 223,000 previously diplaced. Tensions remain high elsewhere in the region due to secessionist movements in the region, including: Chechnya, Ingushetia, and the long-running dispute between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the Nagorno-Karabakh region. Additionally, the frozen conflicts have seen diminished funding for humanitarian assistance, and development assistance has not increased.

The Bureau also works to raise the visibility of stateless and to encourage governments to develop policies to meet humanitarian responsibilities and statelessness.

How much Bureau funding went to projects in your region in fiscal year 2007 (October 2007 – September 30, 2008)?

The Bureau programmed almost $41 million for refugees, returnees, and internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Europe, of which $16.6 million was specifically earmarked for the Caucasus..

Where are your refugee coordinators based? Which countries do they cover?

A refugee coordinator located at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow covers the Bureau's issues in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.

Which international organization (IO) and non-governmental organization (NGO) partners are active in your region?

In the Caucasus, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the International Committee for the Red Cross (ICRC), the United Nations Department of Safety and Security (UNDSS), the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), and the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) all play roles in addressing refugee and IDP concerns. In addition to our contributions to these international organizations, the Bureau currently funds the International Medical Corps (IMC), the International Organization for Migration, the International Relief and Development,  the International Rescue Committee (IRC), Save the Children  and World Vision in the region.

Examples of the kinds of projects these groups run are:

In Chechnya, IMC's health care project;

In the North Causasus,

DRC's shelter, water and sanitation projects;

IRC's shelter and water assistance projects; and

World Vision's health and education programs.

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