Jennifer Utz

My name is Jennifer Utz, and I spent 8 months embedded with Iraqi refugees in the Middle East.

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Iraqi Refugee Stories| 8mins
Director: Jennifer Utz | Producer:
Focus Years: | Country: United States
Subject Tags: americas, human rights, iraq, middle east, migration, united states, war
Quality Tags: Optimistic, Slow, Activating, Harmonizing
Basem's Story: Basem is an engineer who worked for the U.S. Coalition Forces and KBR in Iraq. He left Baghdad in 2005 after having receiving death threats aimed at his entire family. Currently living in Syria, Basem hopes this family will be resettled to another country where they can begin anew. This interview was conducted at the UNHCR processing center in Douma, Syria. Rawnaq's Story: Rawnaq and her family left Baghdad in November 2005 for Amman, Jordan. Although grateful she can provide safety for her two children, she worries about not being able to provide the healthy food they need. With little money to live on, many days Rawnaq is unable to even provide milk to her children. Noor's Story: Sixteen-year-old Noor is from a mixed Sunni-Shiite family from Basra, and is currently living in Damascus. She talks about how the Shiite militias controlled the school she attended – raping and killing girls who didn't abide by their conservative dress code. Sahar's Story: Sixteen-year-old Sahar tells the story of how her father was indiscriminately killed on Christmas Day. Laith's Story: Laith was given the unimaginable task of finding his murdered father’s body in a Baghdad morgue. Searching through 350 dead bodies before he found his father’s, Laith discovered his father had been cruelly tortured. The shock caused Laith to temporarily lose his sight. Even today he struggles with vision problems. Heyfa's Story: From Basra, Heyfa is a Sunni married to a Shiite husband. She describes how one morning she woke up to find a threatening note wrapped around a bullet from the local Shiite militias on her front door, and the response she received from the local police.

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Jennifer Utz

United States


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