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Little Syria

As the world watches on Syria is torn apart by a vicious civil war with millions caught in the middle, giving Syrians little choice but to flee. Turkey is seen as a safe option and thousands of Syrians have made their way across the border. What awaits them is far from ideal. In this two part photo essay, Yücel Zorlu of Agence Le Journal gives us an insight to the daily lives of the Syrian refugees living in Turkey.

Part 2 here.


The number of Syrians fleeing their homes due to the Syrian civil war since 2011 rises day by day, especially in Turkey. According to the UNHCR, the population of the refugees in the metropolitan and border cities of Turkey is approximately 1,730,o00. This number is estimated to reach 2 million shortly. Some of these people live in camps known as “çadır kent” (shelter tents) and most of them in metropolitan and border cities.

Away from the camps the “Küçük Pazar” neighbourhood in İstanbul is the most populated district. Some of the refugees, who say that they came to big cities hoping to find job, are illegally employed or seen as cheap labor. Most of them do not have regular income and have shelter and nutrition problems. In general, the Syrian refugee population needs the support of local residents, government and non-government organisations and international aid organisations, to meet their basic daily needs.

  Indian Enlightenment

01
Syrians fishing in Haliç district; an area densely populated by refugees from the Syrian civil war.

02
Some Syrians work illegal labor jobs, often in highly populated areas of the city.

03
Most Syrian refugees try to just get by living in urban transformation areas.

04
Syrian refugees taking shelter in buildings, evacuated for urban transformation projects.

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“Küçük Pazar” (Little Bazaar) district is known to be densely populated by Syrian refugees. Here  children play among the demolished buildings on the side streets.

06
A Syrian woman, sitting in front of her apartment.

07
A refugee, looking for something to burn on the roof of an evacuated building.

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Crowded families try to live in buildings that barely stand.

0910
Refugees face serious heating problems in the winter months. Often forced to wander the streets to find something to burn.

11
A building waiting to be demolished for an urban transformation project.

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A Syrian woman, climbing through a safety barrier to get to her room.

15
A young Syrian refugee wanders the streets.

Yücel Zorlu is a photographer from Istanbul, Turkey. He is represented by Agence Le Journal, for his documentary and art photography. 

www.yucelzorlu.com

www.agencelejournal.com

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