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Rome Reports

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Starting a new life as a refugee. Exhibit looks into the highs and lows of the journey

A total of 50 photographs, taken over the span of six years, sheds light on the experience. Worldwide, there are more than 51 million refugees. Roughly 16 million of them were forced to flee their countries all together. The other 33 are internally displaced. Nearly 1.2 million have pending asylum claims. Behind each number, lies a story of survival and pain. The exhibit Refugee Hotel, currently on display in Rome, deals with the uprooting and suffering of those who leave their home, to survive.  GABRIELLE STABILE Photographer "From what I've seen, to be taken out of one place, and then placed in another, leaves unimaginable wounds. It's not a bureaucratic or political question, but rather existential.â? On average, about 80,000 refugees arrive to the U.S every year. These images show, the story behind their first night in the country, in a hotel. Many don't sleep in the mattress because they're not used to it. Others are paralyzed by fear. GABRIELLE STABILE Photographer "There was a family from Somalia. When it received the keys to go into the room, the family refused to go in because they were afraid of being forgotten. When you spend a lot of time in a refugee camp, it's easy to feel abandoned.â? Gabrielle Stabile captured the lives of these families over a period of six years. His 50 photographs, display not just everyday life, but also pain, uncertainty, innocence, and even smiles and tears. It shows the challenges of adopting to a new life in an unfamiliar land. They reflect the hardship of unknowingly becoming a victim of the "globalization of indifference.â? AC/RCA MG JM -PR Up: YJA