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World Refugee Day 2004 National Activity Plan: Bulgaria

World Refugee Day, 20 April 2004

On 18 June, a graffiti competition for refugee children will be held in Sofia.

On 29 June, UNHCR will organise the 8th roundtable on the integration of refugees in the expanding European Union, with a focus on Bulgaria. A reception will follow.

On the same day, UNHCR, in cooperation with KANALTEO, will organise an open-air concert in front of the Ivan Vazov theatre in Sofia.

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The Children of Harmanli Face a Bleak Winter

Since the Syrian crisis began in March 2011, more than 2 million people have fled the violence. Many have made their way to European Union countries, finding sanctuary in places like Germany and Sweden. Others are venturing into Europe by way of Bulgaria, where the authorities struggle to accommodate and care for some 8,000 asylum-seekers, many of whom are Syrian. More than 1,000 of these desperate people, including 300 children, languish in an overcrowded camp in the town of Harmanli, 50 kilometres from the Turkish-Bulgarian border. These people crossed the border in the hope of starting a new life in Europe. Some have travelled in family groups; many have come alone with dreams of reuniting in Europe with loved ones; and still others are unaccompanied children. The sheer number of people in Harmanli is taxing the ability of officials to process them, let alone shelter and feed them. This photo essay explores the daily challenges of life in Harmanli.

The Children of Harmanli Face a Bleak Winter