UNRWA raises concern for protection of civilians in Yarmouk Camp

The UN Agency for Palestinian Refugees on Saturday refreshed its call for protection of civilians in Yarmouk Camp that was besieged by the ISIS militants in early April.

Updated Jul 28, 2015

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) called on the Syrian regime and militant groups for protection of civilians in Yarmouk refugee camp which was under attack since early April.

The Agency asked on Saturday the Syrian regime to stop instantly dropping of barrel bombs on the camp by expressing its concerns on the protection of civilians.

The UNRWA also called on fighting militant groups to protect innocent people there according to norms of international law.

Earlier last month the London-based watchdog Syrian Observatory for Human Rights had reported that the al-Assad forces have been bombing the camp from air, but not mentioned immediate civilian casualties.

However, the UN had declared total death toll during the four years old Syrian conflicts as approximately 220,000 people.  

ISIS and Aknaf Beit Al Maqdis militant groups have been struggling over the control of the camp since early April.

It was reportedly said that the ISIS and al Qaeda affiliated al Nusra front have cooperated in the attack and took over most of the camp although the Nusra Front denied such a cooperation with the ISIS militants later on.

Since it has been established in 1957, the Yarmouk refugee camp has been hosting almost half a million of Palestinian refugees until the Syrian civil war.

The UN gives the numbers of Palestinian refugees who were living in Syria prior to the Syrian civil war as nearly 581.000 people.

According to the UNRWA figures, approximately 18,000 Palestinians and Syrians, including 3,500 children, had remained to shelter in the Yarmouk refugee camp near the capital Damascus after the conflicts began at the end of 2011.   

The Syrian refugees were also added during the ongoing warfare conditions in the country, most particularly when the Assad forces started to speed up air strikes in 2012.

When the conflicts escalated between the regime forces, the ISIS militants, al Nusra Front and the components of Free Syrian Army (FSA), hundreds of thousands people were forced to flee from the Yarmouk camp to refugee camps in neighboring Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey.  


TRTWorld and agencies