BEIRUT – The massive, chaotic influx of Syrians fleeing their country's civil war has stretched the resources of the neighboring countries taking them in and raised fears of violence spreading across the region. The U.N. estimates there are now more than 2.5 million Syrians registered in neighboring countries, with 47,700 more awaiting registration.
In addition to those, there are hundreds of thousands of Syrians who fled Syria and have not registered as refugees. The country had a prewar population of 23 million.
As the U.N. refugee agency announced that the number of Syrians registered in Lebanon exceeded the one million mark, here's a look at the number of Syrian refugees in neighboring countries:
Lebanon is now officially home to more than 1 million Syrian refugees, with many more not on the books scattered around the country. The UNHCR described it as a "devastating milestone" for the tiny Arab country with about 4.5 million people of its own. In addition to the registered refugees, there are tens of thousands of other Syrian refugees who are not registered and Lebanese officials estimate the number to be as high as 400,000. Despite grave risk to its own stability, Lebanon has kept its border open to the refugees, but the sheer numbers are straining health, education and housing services to the brink of collapse.
Jordan is home to 588,979 registered Syrians refugees, and the numbers are growing daily. Most of the Syrians are staying in two organized encampments near the northern border with Syria. The larger of them is Zaatari camp, with a population exceeding 120,000, where refugees are under direct care of the United Nations and the Jordanian government. There are an undetermined number of unregistered refugees in Jordan, including many who have moved into the country's towns and cities.
Turkey has 667,556 registered Syrian refugees. Ankara has been funding and managing the refugees, who have been sheltered in 22 camps complete with schools, medical centers and other social facilities. While Turkey's borders with Syria remain open, the country is carefully managing the flow of refugees, processing the new arrivals as more accommodation facilities become available to house them.
Iraq is home to more than 219,579 registered Syrian refugees, the majority of them ethnic Kurds from Syria who found shelter in the autonomous Kurdish region in northern Iraq. Tens of thousands live in a camp of tents and cinderblock shacks near the Syrian border, while the rest have found jobs and homes in towns across the region. The local Iraqi Kurdish government allows them to move around freely. Some Syrians have also sought refuge in Iraq's restive Western province of Anbar but the exact number is not known. They are believed to be mostly Sunnis who dominate the revolt against President Bashar Assad.
Egypt is home to more than 135,841 registered Syrian refugees but officials estimate there are hundreds of thousands of unregistered Syrians in the country.