US Aid for Iraqi Refugees Helps More Jordanians?

In Amman, most Iraqi refugees reside in very basic and often crowded houses. Some aid workers and experts argue that U.S. aid for Iraqi refugees in Jordan actually benefit Jordanians more. Photo by: P.Sands / United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees

The U.S. has provided the Jordanian government with some USD400 million to assist Iraqis seeking refuge in the country. But aid workers, academics and researchers say that the funding has helped more Jordanians than Iraqis.

Since the aid was channeled through the Jordanian government, critics have argued that the funding supported programs that served Jordan’s national priorities, preventing effective assistance for Iraqi refugees.

Part of the U.S. aid went to the construction of schools in Jordan. While some Iraqi refugees will benefit from these schools, most of the impoverished, displaced Iraqis will be resettled to other countries long before the schools open in September, The Christian Science Monitor notes.

According to U.S. Agency for International Development officials, improving local institutions such as schools, hospitals and water systems is the “only effective and fair way” to assist Iraqi refugees, The Christian Science Monitor reports.

About the author

  • Ma. Rizza Leonzon

    As a former staff writer, Rizza focused mainly on business coverage, including key donors such as the Asian Development Bank and AusAID.