Food aid enters Palestinian refugee camp in Syria

Food aid enters Palestinian refugee camp in Syria
Sun Jan 19, 2014 09:14:55

Food aid supplies have started entering a besieged Palestinian refugee camp in the Syrian capital, Damascus, for the first time in months.

Two-hundred food aid baskets were delivered to the Yarmouk camp on the edge of Damascus with the cooperation of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), the Syrian government and Palestinian factions.

The baskets were distributed to the families in dire need inside the camp under the supervision of a Palestinian committee.

Syria hosts half a million Palestinian refugees, most of them living in Yarmouk. The camp turned into a flashpoint area in Damascus when the foreign-hatched unrest broke out in Syria in 2011.

More than 160,000 refugees lived in the camp until December 2012. But many refugees have escaped from Yarmouk due to attacks by foreign-backed militants who have been fighting against the Syrian government. Dozens, however, remain trapped inside the camp.

On January 14, a Palestinian Authority minister blamed foreign-backed militants in Syria for blocking aid access to Yarmouk one day after a sixth aid convoy came under fire and failed to enter the camp.

He said the fire came from areas known to be controlled by Takfiri militant groups, including the al-Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front and Ahrar al-Sham.

Nearly 45 people have reportedly died in Yarmouk over the past few months because of food and medical shortages in the camp.

Syria has been gripped by deadly unrest since 2011, when foreign-backed terrorists hijacked the peaceful protest of Syrian nation.

According to reports, Western powers and their regional allies - especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey - support the militants operating inside the country.

NTJ/HH

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