Stranded civilians in Yarmouk, Damascus. File photo
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Damascus, Syria – Two senior United Nations officials are headed to Syria on an “urgent mission” to aid thousands of civilians trapped in a beleaguered Palestinian refugee camp on the edge of the capital Damascus.
The head of U.N. agency for Palestinian refugees UNRWA, Pierre Krahenbuhl, is meeting Syrian officials to discuss the delivery of aid to the Yarmouk camp which has been stormed by and is currently under the control of Islamic State group jihadists.
According to a statement by the agency, “the visit is prompted by UNRWA’s deepening concerns for the safety and protection of some 18,000 Palestinian and Syrian civilians, including 3,500 children still in the camp”.
Militant fighters of the Islamic State (IS/ISIL) took control of most of the Yarmouk Camp for Palestinian refugees on the outskirts of Damascus a week ago.
In Yarmouk, more than 18,000 civilians –mostly Palestinian refugees– have suffered years of bombing, army siege and militia control.
Reporting by: Suad Hadaya