Call for Yarmouk Truce as Aid Crisis Grows in Jordan

Jan 9 2013 / 2:58 am

Palestinian factions in Damascus supporting the Syrian regime have called for a ceasefire after a month of fighting between government troops and rebels in the Yarmouk district in the south of the capital.

In a statement on Tuesday, representatives of Damascus-based Palestinian groups called for a halt to all military operations in order to enable medical teams and food supply trucks to aid civilians affected by the conflict in Yarmouk.

On Tuesday, activists said at least four people were killed in government bombardments and sniper fire in Yarmouk, as clashes raged on its outskirts.

Yarmouk has been home to Palestinian refugees for decades. Many Syrians also live in the area. Since the uprising against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad began in 2011, residents have been divided with some taking up arms against the regime and some fighting to support it.

The Palestinian groups urged rebels to withdraw from the area “in order not to bear the responsibility of the continuing displacement of residents.

“We call on armed men to withdraw from Yarmouk so the people of the camp can have a roof over their heads again, and put a stop to political strife in Yarmouk,” said a statement issued at a press conference by factions allied to the Syrian regime.

Palestinians in Syria must remain “neutral” in the country’s spiraling crisis, said the statement, which was signed by the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command, the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine and the Nidal Front.

Signatories called on Hamas and the Palestine Liberation Organization to launch an international campaign to enable the return of most of the 150,000 Palestinian residents of Yarmouk, who fled when major violence broke out there in mid-December.

In late December, a PLO official said more than 700 Palestinians have been killed in Syria’s violence.

An anti-regime activist in Yarmouk told Al Jazeera that Tuesday’s announcement had made no difference on the ground, as clashes and shelling by government forces continued. He said that a truce deal between rebels and pro-Assad factions two weeks ago had temporarily calmed the situation and allowed some families to return, but the ceasefire broke down shortly after it was agreed.

Aid Crisis

Syrian refugees frustrated over poor living conditions at a camp in neighboring Jordan started a riot as humanitarian workers were distributing aid.

Scuffles broke out at the Zaatrai camp early on Tuesday morning after heavy rains and cold weather worsened the plight of refugees there.

“The incident started when a large number of refugees were queuing as usual for food handouts,” Al Jazeera’s Nisreen El-Shamayleh, reporting from Jordan, said.

“They were really frustrated and borderline aggressive because it has been very cold and has been raining nonstop for the last 24 hours.”

The United Nations said on Tuesday it is unable to provide aid to one million Syrians in need due to government restrictions on aid distribution and poor security in the war-torn country.

The UN’s World Food Programme is handing out food rations to about 1.5 million people in Syria each month, still short of the 2.5 million deemed to be in need of aid, Elisabeth Byrs, the WFP spokeswoman, said.

The WFP is unable to step up assistance as only a handful of aid agencies are authorized to distribute relief goods in Syria.

“Our main partner, the [Syrian Arab] Red Crescent, is overstretched and has no more capacity to expand further,” Byrs told a news briefing in Geneva.

The UN last month appealed for $1.5b to help save the millions of Syrians suffering from what it called a dramatically deteriorating humanitarian situation.

Four million people in the country need urgent humanitarian aid, including an estimated two million displaced from their homes mainly by government bombardments of opposition-held areas.

(Al Jazeera and Agencies – www.aljazeera.com)

image_pdfimage_print
Posted by on Jan 9 2013 . Filed under News . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 . You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

Leave a Comment

Please insert the correct number.


4 + = 9

The Free Zone | Blog

  • July 28, 2015

    UNRWA to Delay Opening 700 Schools due to Cash Shortage

    The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) held an extraordinary meeting for its consultative committee in Amman on Sunday to discuss its financial crisis, Jordan's Al-Sabeel newspaper has reported. - The agenda included the increasing dangers caused by the probable delay of the start of the school year due to a budget deficit estimated at $101 million. If this happens,... More →
  • July 28, 2015

    Abbas: Egyptian Military Coup was a 'Miracle'

    Palestinian Authority (PA) and Fatah President Mahmoud Abbas praised the military coup in Egypt, describing 30 million people taking to the streets voluntarily to call for the coup a "miracle", Palestinian news agency Safa reported. - "If this real miracle did not take place, we, the Arab and Islamic nations, would have been staggering and trapped in the hands of darkness and dark powers," he said, "but, fortunately,... More →
  • July 28, 2015

    The Deep Roots of Turkey's War on ISIL

    By Ramzy Baroud - July 23 signalled a major shift in Turkey's policy towards Syria when its fighter jets began pounding Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) targets. - The change in Turkey's attitude towards the US-led war on ISIL is explained by many in the context of the devastating suicide bombing in the southern province of Suruc. The attack, which has been blamed on ISIL militants, killed 33 people. - But... More →
  • July 27, 2015

    Palestinian Detainees Set Fire to Rooms Following Israeli Jail Raids

    Palestinian prisoners being held in Israel's Nafta jail set fire to rooms inside the prison after they declared a campaign of non-compliance on Monday in response to cell raids by Israeli prison guards. - The Palestinian Authority Prisoners' Committee told Ma'an that detainees declared a campaign of disobedience after guards raided prisoners' rooms and assaulted several detainees. - Israeli guards reportedly raided... More →
  • July 27, 2015

    Obama Marching Israel to 'Door of the Oven', Says Presidential Hopeful Huckabee

    By endorsing an “idiotic” nuclear deal with Tehran, President Obama is essentially marching Israelis “to the door of the oven,” said Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, bringing Holocaust references to the chorus of Iran critics among US politicians. - “It is so naive that [Obama] would trust the Iranians,” the Republican presidential candidate and former governor of Arkansas Mike Huckabee told... More →
Support Palestine Chronicle
Support Palestine Chronicle
"The Palestine Chronicle is a beacon. History, witness, analysis and ways forward are here, written with authority and humanity. Long may it publish." — John Pilger.
Subscribe to Newsletter
Enter your email address to subscribe to our mailing list.
Email:
separator
Chief Complaint
Return: A Palestinian Memoir
Idea of Israel
Disclaimer RSS Feed Contact us Donation Popup
© Copyright 1999-2015 PalestineChronicle.com. All rights reserved
Powered By MediaSeniors