Govt onslaughts on Yarmouk Camp led to the destruction of 60% of civilian structures and the death of dozens of civilians. Photo credit: AFP
Dozens of Palestinian families presented their ownership documents at a government checkpoint near the main entrance to Street 30 in Yarmouk Camp, in Damascus, so as to get permits to return to the area and retrieve their houses and property.
Local sources said 50 Palestinian families displaced from the camp showed up at the checkpoint, seeking entry permits.
Entry permits are reportedly issued 30 days after the documents are received by the Syrian security forces.
Palestinian families continue to call on the concerned authorities to allow them a safe return to their homes in Yarmouk and to press ahead with reconstruction projects.
A number of activists have also warned of ongoing attempts to alter the demographic character of the camp and blur its identity as a living witness to the Palestinian refugee plight.
Unofficial statistics indicate that some 200 families have remained in Yarmouk Camp. Scores of stranded families fled the camp following the 33-day military operation launched by the government forces on April 19, 2018. The Syrian government forces regained control over the area and southern Damascus towns following the operation. Dozens of civilians were killed and dozens more injured in the offensive. Over 60% of buildings in Yarmouk have gone either totally or partially destroyed.
Last year, the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) published the results of an assessment of the damage to Syrian cities caused by seven years of relentless bombardment by the incumbent regime and its allies since 2011.
The analysis found out that as many as 5,489 buildings were destroyed in Yarmouk Camp for Palestinian refugees. The damage atlas used satellite-detected damage analysis to identify buildings that are either destroyed, or severely or moderately damaged.