Join live discussion from Jordan on Syrian refugees

An aerial view of the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan.

An aerial view of the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan.

One of the globe’s most dire humanitarian issues is about to be beamed live to the Shoreline Community College campus.

More than 600,000 people, about the size of Seattle’s population, have fled the violence in Syria and are now living in towns, cities and refugee camps in Jordan. The exodus is continuing, with hundreds and sometimes thousands of men, women and children crossing the border every day, according to news reports.

Syrian refugees in the Zaatari camp.

Syrian refugees in the Zaatari camp.

At 7 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 30, at a public forum the college Global Affairs Center will connect Amman, Jordan and Shoreline via Skype for a live discussion of the issues and conditions in Jordan as a result of the crisis in Syria. The event is the first in the winter symposia series for the Global Affairs Center. Subsequent events will focus on India, Africa and Indonesia.

On the Jordanian end of Thursday’s conversation will be Alaa Malhas, an independent contractor with the UNICEF Jordan office. UNICEF is a United Nations-affiliated aid organization focused on helping children. Malhas’ work takes her into the refugee camps, including Zaatari which is now home to more than 120,000 people.

On the Shoreline end will be Global Affairs Center Director Larry Fuell and Malhas’ sister, Dima Malhas, a Seattle-based attorney and managing partner with Chung, Malhas & Mantel, PLLC, which specializes in international law and business. The sisters are Jordanian natives.

“We’re very excited to offer this real-time opportunity to see, better understand and ask questions about one of the most current and most important issues of the day,” Fuell said.

The free event will be in the Quiet Dining Room (room 9208) in the PUB on the college campus, 16101 Greenwood Ave. N., Shoreline, WA 98133. Following an initial presentation and discussion, audience members will have an opportunity to ask questions of both Alaa and Dima Malhas.

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