ulrikdk Ulrik Pedersen

Ulrik Pedersen is a freelance photographer from Denmark who mainly focusese on social issues across the world. He has had 10 years of experience working with UN embassies and NGOs in Ethiopia, Kenya, Romania, Philippines, South Sudan, Somalia and Afghanistan. 

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Colorful Chinese Beach Life
Qingdao, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
12 Aug 2015

Millions of Chinese hit the beaches every year. Most Chinese cannot swim so all use swimming tubes, making it hectic, chaotic and colorful.

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Kobane Refugees in Risky Game of Back...
Suruc, Kobane
By Ulrik Pedersen
24 Sep 2014

September 24-26, 2014
Suruc, Turkey; Kobane, Syria

Syrian-Kurdish refugees from the border town of Kobane are continue to shuffle to and from Turkey, returning to Kobane in moments of calm, and fleeing again as the Islamic State (IS) group pushes closer to the center of town. Turkish authorities have at times sealed the border, leading to clashes between refugees and Turkish police.

According to Turkish authorities, the number of refugees seeking shelter in Turkey from the Islamic State group's advance across northeastern Syria has hit 140,000.The head of Turkey's AFAD disaster management agency, Fuat Oktay, said the figure is the result of Syrians escaping the area near the Syrian border town of Kobane, where fighting has raged between IS and Kurdish fighters since September 18.

Clashes broke out between refugees and Turkish forces on September 26, as refugees destroyed the border fence from inside Turkey to help their fellow Syrians escape. Turkish security forces replied with tear gas, paint pellets, and water cannons.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the Islamic State group has taken control of 64 villages in northeastern Syria. It says that the fate of 800 Kurds from these villages is unknown, adding that the Islamic State group executed 11 civilians, including two boys.

Western forces bombed IS troops outside Kobane, but without proper weapons, the Kurds might not be able to hold the city much longer.

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Kobane Refugees in Risky Game of Back...
Suruc, Kobane
By Ulrik Pedersen
23 Sep 2014

September 24-26, 2014
Suruc Turkey; Kobane, Syria

Syrian-Kurdish refugees from the border town of Kobane are continue to shuffle to and from Turkey, returning to Kobane in moments of calm, and fleeing again as IS pushes closer to the center of town. Turkish authorities have at times sealed the border, leading to clashes between refugees and Turkish police.

According to Turkish authorities, the number of refugees seeking shelter in Turkey from the Islamic State group's advance across northeastern Syria has hit 140,000.The head of Turkey's AFAD disaster management agency, Fuat Oktay, said the figure is the result of Syrians escaping the area near the Syrian border town of Kobane, where fighting has raged between IS and Kurdish fighters since September 18.

Clashes broke out between refugees and Turkish forces on September 26, as refugees destroyed the border fence from inside Turkey to help their fellow Syrians escape. Turkish security forces replied with tear gas, paint pellets, and water cannons.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the Islamic State group has taken control of 64 villages in northeastern Syria. It says that the fate of 800 Kurds from these villages is unknown, adding that the Islamic State group executed 11 civilians, including two boys.

Western forces bombed ISIS troops outside Kobane, but without proper weapons, the Kurds might not be able to hold the city much longer.

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North Korea in Black and White
north korea
By Ulrik Pedersen
01 Jun 2014

North Korea

For decades North Korea has been one of the world's most secretive societies. It is one of the few countries still under nominally communist rule and with their nuclear ambitions have threatened several countries and the stability of the region.

The Korean Peninsula was governed by the Korean Empire from the late 19th century until it was annexed by the Empire of Japan in 1910. After the surrender of Japan at the end of World War II, the Korean Peninsula was divided into two occupied zones in 1945, with the northern part of the peninsula occupied by the Soviet Union and the southern portion by the United States. In 1948 two separate Korean governments was established: the Democratic People's Republic of Korea in the north, and the Republic of Korea in the south. The conflicting claims of sovereignty led to the Korean War in 1950 ending with an armistice in 1953.

Since 1953, North Korea have had 3 leaders. First Kim Il Sung, 1912–94, trained in Moscow before World War II, and in 1945 he became chairman of the Soviet-sponsored People's Committee of North Korea. In 1948, when the People's Republic was established, he became its first premier and founding father of North Korea. Under his rule, North Korea increased its military forces, embarked on a program of industrialization, and maintained close relations with both China and the Soviet Union. He became eternal president of North Korea after his death.

His son, Kim Jong Il, 1941–2011, was groomed as his successor. Upon his father's death, Kim Jong Il took over leadership of the country. Although Kim established relations with a number of Western nations, easing the North's diplomatic isolation, and hosted meetings with South Korea, he did not reciprocate with a visit to the South, and the North developed nuclear weapons and provoked international crises to win desperately needed food and other aid after a famine in the mid to late 1990s resulting in between 500000 to 3.5 million deaths depending on source of information. In 2010, due to ill health, the "Dear Leader" moved to secure the succession for his youngest son, Kim Jong Un, 1984– .He was named to succeed his father in 2011. There has been no discernible improvement in human rights in North Korea since Kim Jong-Un assumed power. The government continues to impose totalitarian rule.

Although the DPRK officially describes itself as a Juche Korean-style socialist state and elections are held, it is widely considered a dictatorship that has been described as totalitarian and Stalinist with an elaborate cult of personality around the Kim family. Juche, an ideology of self-reliance initiated by the country's first President, Kim Il-sung, became the official state ideology, replacing Marxism–Leninism, when the country adopted a new constitution in 1972. The means of production are owned by the state through state-run enterprises and collectivized farms, and most services such as healthcare, education, housing and food production are state funded or subsidized.

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North Korea in Color
north korea
By Ulrik Pedersen
01 Jun 2014

June, 2014
North Korea

While the grim side of life in North Korea has had plenty of exposure, photographer Ullrik Pedersen captured the colorful side of North Korea, offering a new image of one of the world's most restrictive states.

Although the DPRK officially describes itself as a Juche Korean-style socialist state where elections are held, it is widely considered a dictatorship. The country has been described as totalitarian, Stalinist state with an elaborate cult of personality around the Kim family. Juche, an ideology of self-reliance initiated by the country's first President Kim Il-sung, is the official state ideology. The means of production are owned by the state through state-run enterprises and collectivized farms, and most services such as healthcare, education, housing and food production are state funded or subsidized.

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Bam: 10 Years After an Earthquake
Bam, Iran
By Ulrik Pedersen
27 Jan 2014

Ten Years after an Earthquake. Bam, Iran.

Mustafa was studying in his own room, in a typical Bamian house made of mud-bricks, on an early Friday morning of December 26, 2003. He was the only one who was not a sleep in a household consisting of both his wife and children, parents and brothers and sisters. At 5.26 everything was shaking, short but very violent. Mustafa woke up his wife and child, a small girl only one year old, and got them out of the house. On the way back to get his parents, brothers and sisters out, the whole house collapsed in front of him. He started dicking to get to his family out but it was just clay and very hard without any tools to assist. Hours later helps arrives and the bodies of his family is found later in the day.Thinking about that day: Mustafa, looking towards the sky and says “the best families died, the best friends died”

The earthquake in Bam, Iran, killed 26,271 people, injuring an additional 30,000, flattened 70% of Bam's buildings and equally devastated the nearby towns and villages. It was the worst in the history of Iran.

Ten years later the signs of the earthquake are not visible on a quiet stroll around the city centre. New houses are build across the town with material that can resist the inevitable next earthquake, a new bazar buzzing with business and schools and other government institutions are spread across the city. According to citizens the city is a lot more beautiful now than before the earthquake. There are still buildings where the iron structure is the only visible part and in the outskirts of the city you can still find houses which are standing like just after the earthquake 10 years ago.

To see some evidence of the earthquake you have to walk around a kilometre from the city centre. There you find the cemetery where 25000 were buried, sometimes six deep, after the earthquake. Next to the cemetery there are two enormous mounds,full of debris from the buildings destroyed during the earthquake. It is by far the tallest structures in the region and gives a view of the cemetery, the city, nearby mountains and the surrounding desert. A constant reminder, if needed, about the earthquake 10 years ago.

The main visually evidence of the earthquake is Bam Citadel (or Arg-e-Bam) which was reduced from a stunning byzantine citadel, visited by more than 100,000 people yearly prior to the earthquake, to a canyon of pulverised rubble. Around 50 people, on a daily basis, are attempting to piece together what used to stand as the world's largest adobe structure and best example of a fortified medieval walled city. Now parts of the upper parts, walls and entrance are back to a pre earthquake state. Bamians would like the citadel to be restored fully but the time and funds needed are substantial.

Mustafa is now part of a flourishing business environment in Bam. Bam is, and was, a rich city and the redevelopment of Bam following the earthquake provided the city with considerable opportunities for growth. Notably the redesign and rebuilding of the city greatly improved the irrigation system and its quality, crucial to the date industry in Bam.The growth of the date industry since the earthquake in Bam has seen the expansion of the palm orchards, and an increase in investment and employment. Mustafa is selling wood panels for houses and is very satisfied with the development the last 10 years.

There are of course still problems with orphans and drug users. Bam is close to Afghanistan and thereby on the smuggling route of opium and with the mental problems after the earthquake, addiction to opium has increased. Bam has several orphanages, both with kids from the earthquake but also later. The orphanages are well build with toys and good facilities.

Mustafa is positive about the future. Bam is back on track (actually better than before the earthquake), Iran is talking to the western countries again and he is able to travel both to Europe and Asia without any problems.

With the essential components of a society re-established, housing, education, health care, employment opportunities, infrastructure, etc. now in place, the reconstructing of Bam should qualify as a success.

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A Portrait of the Iranian Kurds
Palangan
By Ulrik Pedersen
15 Mar 2014

Iranian Kurdistan is located in western Iran and borders Iraq and Turkey. It includes Kurdistan Province, Kermanshah Province, parts of Ilam Province, and parts of West Azerbaijan Province. According to the last census, conducted in 2006, the four Kurdish-inhabited provinces of Iran have a total population of 6,738,787. About 60% of the inhabitants are Shia. Kurdish political organizations supported the revolution against the Shah in February 1979, as the latter had shown himself to be no friend of Kurdish aspirations for greater autonomy. However, from the early days of the revolution, relations between the Islamic Republic and Kurdish organizations have been fraught with difficulties.The Kurds were seen as vulnerable to exploitation by foreign powers who wished to destabilize the young republic.  In April 1979, Sunni Kurds abstained from voting to endorse the creation of an Islamic republic. The referendum ultimately institutionalized Shia supremacy and made no provision for regional autonomy. Given that only 60% of Kurds are Shia, it has been difficult for Kurdish political parties to get all Kurds to agree on pursuing autonomy. Amnesty International says that Kurds have been a particular target of the Islamic Republic of Iran, and the Kurds' "social, political and cultural rights have been repressed, as have their economic aspirations.” At the beginning of the 21st century, a number of Kurdish activists, writers, and teachers were arrested for their work and were sentenced to death. The arrests are likely due to the government's crackdown following the nationwide protests after Iran's 2009 presidential elections. Following the election of President Rouhani, there are signals of a clear policy shift in Iran’s treatment of ethnic and religious minorities, and some see a brighter future on the horizon for Iran's kurds.

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Pungesti: The village that said no
pungesti, romania
By Ulrik Pedersen
06 Mar 2014

The villagers of Pungesti, Romania are unlikely eco-activists. The tiny village garnered worldwide attention in October 2013 when villagers started protesting against US energy giant Chevron's fracking activities in their village. Hundreds of activists from across the country also flocked to the Pungesti to support the residents in their fight. Hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking”, consists of pumping chemicals at high pressure into deep rock to extract oil or gas. The village's inhabitants, most of whom are elderly farmers who rely on agriculture to survive, are worried fracking could damage the local environment by contaminating their land and ground water. They say fracking will lead to health problems, air pollution and deforestation. Following the protests, police and gendarmerie increased their presence in the village and many residents were subsequently injured in protests that turned violent.

In 2010, the Romanian Government quietly allowed fracking operations to commence by signing an agreement with Chevron, giving it access to more than two million acres of land in Romania. The villagers managed to collect over a thousand signatures from a population of 3,300 for a petition demanding the dismissal of the mayor, who they accuse of corruption. However, the Romanian government disregarded the petition and the mayor remains in office.

Media created

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Chinese Beach 04
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
30 Jul 2015

Children playing among the algae coming to the beach every year. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 05
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
30 Jul 2015

Person lying on the sand in full body gear, a way of avoiding getting tanned. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 08
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
29 Jul 2015

A woman sitting among the algae. Every year they come at Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 09
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
29 Jul 2015

A child coming from the sea after swimming. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 07
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
29 Jul 2015

A man relaxing at the beach. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 10
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
29 Jul 2015

Mother and daughter with matching swimming tubes. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 06
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
27 Jul 2015

A man with yellow swimming tube. Many Chinese don't know how to swim. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 20
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
27 Jul 2015

Children playing at the beach. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 14
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
27 Jul 2015

Husband and wife with their colorful swimming tubes. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 15
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
27 Jul 2015

Swimming suits, tubes and umbrellas give a very colorful touch to the beach life. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China

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Chinese Beach 16
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
27 Jul 2015

Full body swimming suits is a different way of preventing from getting a tan. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 13
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
27 Jul 2015

A man sleeping on the beach under a tree. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 12
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
27 Jul 2015

Mother and child, both using the "facekini" to ensure they don't get tanned in the face. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 11
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
27 Jul 2015

Small girl posing in front of the beach crowded with thousands of people. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 02
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
26 Jul 2015

Most Chinese cannot swim so they use tubes. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 03
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
26 Jul 2015

With thousands of people coming to the beach, there are different activities people can try. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 17
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
26 Jul 2015

Facekinis are becoming more and more popular among Chinese at the beaches in China. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 18
Qingdao Shi, Shandong Sheng
By Ulrik Pedersen
26 Jul 2015

Father and son relaxing at the beach. Qingdao Beach, Qingdao, China.

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Chinese Beach 19
Dalian, Liaoning
By Ulrik Pedersen
13 Aug 2015

There are numerous barbecues at the beach. Dalian beach, Dalian, China.

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Chinese Beach 01
Dalian, Liaoning
By Ulrik Pedersen
11 Aug 2015

A tattoed man in with his tube and the new bridge in the background. Dalian beach, Dalian, China.

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Mother, Child, and Kalashnikov
Kobane
By Ulrik Pedersen
24 Sep 2014

A Syrian women from Kobane with her child and AK-47 Assault Rifle on the Turkish-Syrian border, near Kobane. Thousands of Syrians from Kobane fled the ISIS assault on their city for the nearby sanctuary of Turkey. Across Iraq and Syria women are taking up arms against ISIS.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey Colour 17
kobane
By Ulrik Pedersen
26 Sep 2014

View of Syria from Turkey. Syrians are not allowed to take cars, trucks or animals across the border, so they try to stay safe by being close to the border. ISIS are less than 1 km away from the border. Kobane Valley, Syria.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey Colour 18
mursitpinar
By Ulrik Pedersen
26 Sep 2014

A woman looking after a baby in a refugee tent near the Syrian border. Mursitpinar, Turkey.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey Colour 12
mursitpinar
By Ulrik Pedersen
25 Sep 2014

Syrians shuffle between Turkey and Kobane. Many of those who fled Kobane make multiple trips back and forth from Turkey during moments of calm in order to collect as many of their belongings as possible. This women is heading back into Syria. No one is sure if the Kurdish YPG forces will be able to hold IS at bay. Mursitpinar, Turkey.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 23
mursitpinar
By Ulrik Pedersen
26 Sep 2014

Two brothers looking after each other in a small refugee camp next to the border of Syria. Mursitpinar, Turkey.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 22
kobane
By Ulrik Pedersen
26 Sep 2014

View of Syria from Turkey. Syrians are not allowed to take cars, trucks and animals across the border, so they try to stay safe by being close to the border. ISIS are less than 1 km from the border. Kobane Valley, Syria.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 21
kobane
By Ulrik Pedersen
26 Sep 2014

People cross the destroyed border fence to assist Syrian Kurds in defending the city of Kobane. Kobane, Syria.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 20
kobane
By Ulrik Pedersen
26 Sep 2014

A Syrian female fighter with her child and an AK-47 assault rifle. Across Iraq and Syrian, especially Syrian-Kurdish females are fighting ISIS. Kobane, Syria.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 19
suruc
By Ulrik Pedersen
26 Sep 2014

Refugees and locals meet every day at the main square, where aid organizations hand out food. Suruc, Turkey.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 18
kobane
By Ulrik Pedersen
26 Sep 2014

A Kurdish woman crossing the destroyed border fence between turkey and Syria. The fence was destroyed by Syrian Kurds on the Turkish side, who were trying to help those on the Syrian side escape. Kobane, Syria.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 17
mursitpinar
By Ulrik Pedersen
26 Sep 2014

A girl looking through one of the windows of a small refugee tent, in a camp close to the border of Syria. Mursitpinar, Turkey.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 16
mursitpinar
By Ulrik Pedersen
26 Sep 2014

A woman looking after small baby in refugee tent next to the border of Syria. Mursitpinar, Turkey.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 15
suruc
By Ulrik Pedersen
25 Sep 2014

Small children continue playing amongst themselves with little understanding of what is happening. However, their parents are in a constant state of anxiety. Suruc, Turkey.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 14
suruc
By Ulrik Pedersen
25 Sep 2014

This infant was born 20 days prior, along with a twin. The two are beginning life in the most uncertain and dangerous of circumstances. Suruc, Turkey.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 13
suruc
By Ulrik Pedersen
25 Sep 2014

A girl from Kobane in a car with her family on the way to the border from Suruc. Suruc, Turkey.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 12
suruc
By Ulrik Pedersen
25 Sep 2014

Children lining up for food handouts. Both the Syrian areas around Kobane, and the Turkish areas around Suruc are inhabited predominantly by ethnic Kurds. Therefore, there has been an increased sense of solidarity and sympathy amongst those in Suruc toward the Kobane refugees. These food handouts are one manifestation of that sympathy. Suruc, Turkey.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 11
mursitpinar
By Ulrik Pedersen
25 Sep 2014

Syrians shuffle between Turkey and Kobane. Many of those who fled Kobane make multiple trips back and forth from Turkey during moments of calm in order to collect as many of their belongings as possible. This women is heading back into Syria. No one is sure if the Kurdish YPG forces will be able to hold IS at bay. Mursitpinar, Turkey.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 09
suruc
By Ulrik Pedersen
25 Sep 2014

Men signing up for refugee IDs. Syrians wants to return, but they still try to get refugee IDs in case they are not able to return in the near future. Suruc, Turkey.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 08
By Ulrik Pedersen
25 Sep 2014

Women and children stand in front of Turkish police officers as they close the border at noon. Mursitpinar, Turkey.

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Syrian Refugees in Turkey 07
suruc
By Ulrik Pedersen
24 Sep 2014

Children relaxing on a blanket where they also sleep in a park in Suruc. Suruc, Turkey.