Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Syrians continue to flee

From AFP:
The number of Syrians fleeing to the Al Zaatri refugee camp in Jordan has doubled in recent days, with more than 10,000 taking shelter there, the UN refugee agency said on Tuesday.

"The pace of arrivals from the Syrian border to the Zaatri camp in north Jordan has doubled in the past week," Melissa Flemming, a spokeswoman for the UN refugee agency UNHCR, told a press conference.

She said that 10,200 people had poured into the camp in the week ending on August 27, compared with 4,500 the week before. More than 22,000 Syrians have taken shelter at the Al Zaatri camp since it opened on July 30.

"Refugees say many thousands more are waiting to cross amid violence aroung Daraa and we believe this could be the start of a much larger influx".

An increasing number of refugees were unaccompanied minors, she said.

"We have received in the camp over the past week an increased number of unaccompanied children," she said. "Some children report that their parents have died, or are staying behind."
And Jordan is expected to open another camp to handle the influx.

But not all the people leaving Syria are refugees.

Yesterday, Jordanian media reported that authorities arrested nine Syrian "sleeper cells" in the refugee camp.