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February 11, 2010

RING IN THE CHINESE NEW YEAR - Students at Wake Forest University will ring in the Chinese New Year with the traditional Lion Dance at noon on Saturday, February 13, on Manchester Plaza. The traditional dance wards off evil spirits and brings in good luck. A kung fu demonstration will also be given.

EMERGENCY IN HAITI FAR FROM OVER - The immediate danger may have passed for those who survived Haiti's earthquake, but as tens of thousands of homeless residents flee into the countryside into refugee camps, more dangers await, says Sarah Lischer, an expert on humanitarian aid and an assistant professor of political science at Wake Forest University. Lischer says the situation will become more dire as survivors’ small stores of food and money run out. “Like refugees, the Haitians find themselves suddenly displaced and without any resources. They are living in limbo at risk of starvation and disease. Over the next few weeks, the number one priority is to avert massive deaths from cholera, malaria, and diarrhea. This will require the provision of clean water, shelter, food, and medical care. Lischer is the author of the book, “Dangerous Sanctuaries: Refugee Camps, Civil War and Dilemmas of Humanitarian Aid.” “Unlike refugees, victims of natural disaster have no legal right to apply for asylum since they are not fleeing political persecution,” she says. “The United States has warned that any Haitians intercepted on their way to Florida will be summarily returned to Haiti. The Dominican Republic has also closed its borders. Despite their differences, in both natural disasters and refugee crises a surge of international concern is likely to subside far sooner than the victims’ needs are met.”

Press Contacts:

Kerry King
(336) 758-6084

Ellen Sterner Sedeno
(214) 546-8893

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