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Story Publication logo February 22, 2015

A Syrian Family Uprooted by War, Reunited in Germany


Rafat and Naif on the overlook in the Black Forest near Zell am Hammersbach, Germany. Image by Holly Pickett. Germany, 2014.

Thousands of displaced Syrians have made treacherous journeys across land and sea to the safe haven...

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Around 200,000 people, many of them Syrians, applied for asylum in Germany last year, more than in any other European Union country. These images are from a story about one close-knit, middle-class family, the Al Aydis, who fled their home in the middle of the night, in advance of a Syrian Army assault on their Yarmouk neighborhood. Eight adult siblings scattered, some making their way to Lebanon, others to Turkey or Egypt. Wisam and Mwafak and their families arrived in Germany in 2013 and 2014, respectively, but were resettled on opposite sides of the country. For Wisam's family of seven, the previous three years took a toll and the transition in Germany was not smooth. They had moved 12 times since the war began, half of those since they arrived in Germany. Wisam and Mwafak's sister Manal arrived in October, terminally ill with cancer. These refugees, who were now safe from bombs and snipers, turned all their energy toward being together.

Listen to "Split by War, Syrian Siblings Reunite as Refugees in Germany" on NPR.



teal halftone illustration of a family carrying luggage and walking


Migration and Refugees

Migration and Refugees

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