Progress made in repelling Daesh from Yarmouk camp

Published April 7th, 2015 - 08:33 GMT
Al Bawaba
Al Bawaba

The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) said on Tuesday that Daesh militants have retreated from parts of Yarmouk, the largest camp for Palestinian refugees in Syria.

" Daesh organization now controls only 60 percent of Yarmouk camp after they had seized 90 percent of it," Anwar Abdel-Hadi, who oversees the PLO's affairs in Syria, told Palestine's official radio station on Tuesday.

Abdel-Hadi said that clashes are still ongoing between Daesh militants and Palestinian popular committees inside Yarmouk camp.

"[Daesh] militants are firing at anyone who tries to enter or exit the camp," he said.

The Yarmouk camp – Syria's largest Palestinian refugee camp, hosting tens of thousands of Palestinian refugees – is located on Damascus' outskirts.

Violence has flared in the camp earlier this month, when Daesh militants stormed it and clashed with the Aknaf Beit al-Maqdis militant group inside.

According to the Syrian Network for Human Rights, at least 12 people have been killed in the violence.

Syria has been ravaged by a deadly civil war since 2011, when the regime of President Bashar al-Assad violently cracked down on anti-government demonstrations.

More than 220,000 people have been killed in the conflict to date, according to the latest UN figures.

Prior to the conflict, Palestinians living in Syria were estimated at some 581,000 – one third of whom had been living in the Yarmouk camp, according to the UN.

In recent years, however, as the conflict between Assad's forces and armed opposition groups rages on, thousands of Palestinians in Syria have fled to neighboring Lebanon and Jordan, while hundreds of others have fled to the Gaza Strip.

Around 166 Palestinian refugees starved to death in mid-2013 when Syrian regime forces besieged the Yarmouk camp.

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