UNRWA Syria crisis situation update (Issue 26)

27 December 2012

Note: Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) will disseminate information about the situation of Palestine refugees in Syria.

 26 December 2012

This week’s Christmas holiday has not lessened the violence in Syria nor has it brought a positive change in negotiations between the Syrian government and opposition groups. As of 25 December, 5,775 Syrians and Palestine refugees seeking safety were being accommodated in UNRWA school buildings and the Agency‘s Vocational Training Centre in Damascus.
 
Damascus- Clashes and shelling continue in the Yarmouk refugee camp and UNRWA staff have been advised not to enter for any reason. The Agency’s facilities remain closed.
    
The neighbourhoods of Khan Dannoun, Dummar, Mezzeh, Ellianss, Jaramana and Khan Eshieh in Damascus were reportedly calm yesterday and UNRWA facilities are operational in these areas.
 
Clashes and shelling also continue around Sbeineh Camp on Tuesday, but the camp itself remains relatively calm.
 
Sporadic clashes and explosions took place throughout Monday and Tuesday in Jobar, Qaboun, and Barzah, with reports of people fleeing Qaboun in search of shelter in other areas.
 
Rukan Al Deen was calm with reports of one explosion near the Salah al-Din mosque in the afternoon. Husseiniyeh and Sit Zeinab camps were both calm but clashes and explosions occurred in the surrounding areas of both camps.
 
Sounds of mortar fire and helicopter activity can still be heard near the Agency’s Syria Field Office.
 
UNRWA’s Damascus Training Centre (DTC) continues to house internally displaced persons (IDPs) who are sheltering in the classrooms and dormitories. They continue to receive two meals a day prepared by the Centre’s staff, and blankets and mattresses. The Centre’s clinic is operational and a medical doctor and a nurse treat medical cases there. Because the DTC is filled to capacity, additional IDPs are being re-directed to the Agency’s schools in the surrounding areas, including in Dummar, Jaramanah, Khan Dannoun, Mezzeh, Ramadan and Khan Eshieh camps. Shelter is still a pressing priority and UNRWA is doing its best to accommodate all IDPs.
 
According to sources at UNRWA, Dera’a city, the camp and surrounding areas are calm and no access restrictions were put in place inside the city for the holidays.
 
Large-scale electricity cuts are ongoing in Homs, with sporadic shelling throughout the night and sounds of fighter jets and air strikes during the day, all targeting Bab Amr neighbourhood.
 
In Hama, sporadic clashes continue in the city, although UNRWA facilities were operational as of Monday with staff delivering 458 mattresses to IDPs who arrived from Aleppo.
 
Latakia is reportedly calm and all UNRWA facilities are operational.
 
Large-scale electricity and water cuts reported in most parts of Aleppo city, in addition to reports of difficulty finding bread. Clashes and explosions can be heard at night and an uneasy calm during the day with sporadic shelling sounds. Neirab and Ein al Tal camps were reportedly calm on Monday, with residents using alternative roads to move between the camps and city due to armed activities on regular roads. Despite difficulties, all UNRWA facilities are operational. Cash distribution to beneficiaries is ongoing with UNRWA staff distributing aid to 260 families in Ein al Tal.
 

Location

Actual Accommodated till the moment

# of families

Women

Men

Children

UNRWA Compound

1,093

195

294

317

482

Jaramana

1,145 

229

372

374

399

Mazzeh (Jabal)

471

133

159

143

169

Khan Eshieh

1,210

156

440

320

450

Ramadan

935

221

333

280

322

Dummar

286

53

85

87

114

Ruken Eddin

272

56

96

74

102

Khan Danoun

289

43

95

75

119

Total

5,701

1,086

1,874

1,670

2,157

 
 --Ends--
To read more detailed information about events throughout the country, sign up to receive weekly updates on our humanitarian response in Syria at www.unrwa.org/syria.
Click here to read the latest UNRWA statement on the humanitarian crisis in Yarmouk published on 17 December.
Click here to read about UNRWA’s emergency response in the last situation report published on 16 December.
Click here to read a profile of Yarmouk describing the scope of UNRWA’s work there before the outbreak of recent hostilities.
Click here to read about UNRWA’s regular work in Syria.
 

Background information:

As the Syria conflict and its impact on civilians continue to escalate, UNRWA continues to exert all efforts to respond to the humanitarian needs of Palestine refugees. The Agency is monitoring the situation as it evolves, and its staff will continue to assess the situation and render any needed assistance.

UNRWA is a United Nations agency established by the General Assembly in 1949 and is mandated to provide assistance and protection to a population of some 5 million registered Palestine refugees. Its mission is to help Palestine refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, West Bank and the Gaza Strip to achieve their full potential in human development, pending a just solution to their plight. UNRWA’s services encompass education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement, microfinance and emergency assistance.

Financial support to UNRWA has not kept pace with an increased demand for services caused by growing numbers of registered refugees, expanding need, and deepening poverty. As a result, the Agency‘s General Fund, supporting UNRWA’s core activities and 97 per cent reliant on voluntary contributions, has begun each year with a large projected deficit.
 
For more information, please contact:
Sami Mshasha

UNRWA Arabic Spokesperson
Mobile: +972 (0)54 216 8295
Office: +972 (0)2 589 0724
s.mshasha@unrwa.org 

 

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