Dumping American charities from some of the world’s neediest spots seems to be the in thing for foreign governments to do these days with India deciding to boot Compassion International out of the country. Tmatt covered that yesterday.
But Compassion is not alone. A Portland, Ore.,-based charity called Mercy Corps International, with a staff of 5,000 in 45 countries, is getting the heave-ho from Turkey. Mercy Corps is helping 500,000 displaced Syrians who, as everyone knows, need all the help they can get these days. But the Turks feel otherwise.
Compassion is an openly Christian group; a factor that’s been mentioned in coverage of the ouster. And so was Mercy Corps soon after its founding.
So, here’s what the Oregonian had to say about it:
A Portland-based humanitarian agency has been forced to shutter its operations in Turkey, affecting lifesaving help for up to 500,000 people each month in neighboring Syria, according to the group.
Mercy Corps used Turkey as a base for what it called "one of the largest humanitarian operations in Syria." It said the Turkish government rescinded its registration to work in the country after five years there.
"Our operations in Syria will continue, and our priority right now is to limit any adverse effects our departure from Turkey may have on the innocent men, women and children who depend on our assistance," the agency said in a statement. "Our sites in Turkey are closed."
The agency has worked in Turkey since 2012 serving 360,000 men, women and children in Syria and about 100,000 in Turkey, said Christine Bragale, spokeswoman. About 200 Turkish staff members will be laid off, most other expatriate staff have left the country, she said.
Bragale said the agency has not received a reason for the Turkish action. She said a government official told Reuters it's a technical issue related to documentation.
Yeah, right. The Oregonian, of all places, should know Mercy Corps' history but no connections are made.