Jordan: An urban phenomenon

Matthew Hay Brown, for the Pulitzer Center
Amman, Jordan

These refugees don't live in camps. And that's making it more difficult for aid workers to address their growing needs.

The great majority of Iraqis who have come to Jordan have settled here in the capital. Most have disappeared into the cosmopolitan population of this Middle Eastern hub; many are intentionally keeping their profiles low, for fear of being caught, detained, and sent back to Iraq.

"It's completely different from a camp situation," Imran Riza, the country representative for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, told me this afternoon. "In a camp situation, you know what the population is. You know how much water they need. You know what medical supplies are going in, you know what's being used, you can measure, you can plan."

But with the Iraqis, he said, to know numbers, to access them, to do proper outreach, to do proper assessments, all these things are far, far more complicated."