Angelina Jolie

Angelina Jolie visits Syrian border, pleads for end to 'horrific situation'

Sep. 11, 2012 at 8:13 AM ET

The Syrian civil war has been raging for more than a year and a half, and Tuesday morning a fresh face stepped into the mix, as Angelina Jolie visited the Al Zaatri refugee camp near the country's border with Jordan. TODAY's Ann Curry was on hand to find out what the actress saw, and what it all meant.

"It's been a very heavy experience, because oftentimes you come to these camps and ... very rarely do you ... meet them as they cross the border and you get to know people the moment they become a refugee," said Jolie in a press conference. "The moment they've forever lost their home, their livelihood, their education, everything they have been is gone, and when I ask them, 'What did you bring?' they say 'This' (plucks at her shirt) 'The shirt on my back.'"

Jolie has long volunteered for humanitarian causes, and currently serves as a Special Envoy to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. When Curry asked her about the frustration she feels about being unable to reach people inside Syria, Jolie said she had been speaking for the last two days with Syrians about what they witnessed. 

Handout / Getty Images /
UNHCR Special Envoy Angelina Jolie meets with refugees on the Jordanian border minutes after they crossed from Syria on Sept. 10.

"What they describe on the ground, hearing it from them, is so horrific," said Jolie. "It is a horrific situation and a very, very critical time. So for all the politicians out there -- and we are not them -- we hope and pray that they figure out something soon because people are dying, hundreds and hundreds of people are dying every day."

Curry said more than 200,000 people have fled over the border into Jordan alone. She will have more to report from Syria on Tuesday on NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams.

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