UNRWA Official: Families’ Return to Yarmouk Camp Requires Unity among Palestinians

UNRWA Official: Families’ Return to Yarmouk Camp Requires Unity among Palestinians

Heavy destruction was inflicted on Yarmouk Camp all the way through Syria’s warfare. Photo credit: AFP

Education chief of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) in Syria’s Yarmouk Camp for Palestinian refugees, Walid AlKurdi, said the return of displaced families to their homes in Yarmouk requires unified positions by Palestinian political factions.

In statements posted on his Facebook account, AlKurdi urged Palestinian political leaders to combine forces and seriously work on alleviating the agony of the displaced Palestinian families.

He said the Syrian government welcomes all attempts to assist Palestinians in Yarmouk, referring to its decision to open schools and Palestinian Red Crescent clinics in Yarmouk Street as proofs.

The UN official also said authorities are awaiting the delivery of UNRWA funds and donations to start reconstruction works of AlTabegha School.

According to UNRWA, in December 2012, fierce clashes erupted in Yarmouk, an area of Damascus home to approximately 160,000 Palestine refugees. The intensity of these clashes and the widespread use of heavy weapons caused numerous civilian casualties, severe damage to property and the displacement of 140,000 Palestine refugees and thousands of Syrians.

In July 2013, a state of siege emerged in Yarmouk, trapping the remaining 18,000 civilians inside and preventing the entry of commercial and humanitarian goods. Severe hunger and deprivation emerged over the following six months, while intensive armed clashes continued.

The Syrian government recaptured the camp on May 21, 2018, following a 33-day military operation launched in cooperation with the Russian forces on April 19, 2018. Mortar shells, tank shells, missiles, and other types of weapons slammed into the camp, resulting in the destruction of 60% of civilian buildings and facilities.

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