More than 1 million people have been displaced in Iraq, states a new UNHCR report. Many of those people are women and children, fleeing violence while men join the conflict, though a significant number of men have also fled their homes in fear of being forced to fight. That number is only expected to rise as the sectarian violence in Iraq continues.
Meanwhile, Nouri al-Maliki’s Shiite-dominated government has not yet agreed to be more inclusive to other religious groups, and has also deflected calls from the international community for him to step down. Though the United States, headed by Secretary of State John Kerry, has pressured the Iraqi Prime Minister to end his seemingly-futile efforts to maintain order in his nation, the leaders of Iran and Syria still support him. In fact, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has reportedly authorized air strikes against insurgents in Iraq, both as a show of support to his embattled ally and an effort to protect his own nation. The international community can only hope that the situation does not deteriorate further, but at this point, that seems inevitable.