World, Middle East

Number of Syrians fleeing Daraa hits 150,000

Syrians flee regime attacks in Daraa, seek refuge near Israeli and Jordanian borders

Number of Syrians fleeing Daraa hits 150,000 Syrians wait at border areas near Jordan after they fled from the ongoing military operations by Bashar al-Assad regime and its allies in Syria’s Daraa, on June 29, 2018. ( Ammar Al Ali -Anadolu Agency )

DARAA, Syria  

The number of people who have fled Syria’s southwestern city of Daraa to the border areas near Jordan and Israel due to fierce Assad regime attacks now stands at some 150,000, Syria’s White Helmets civil-defense agency said Friday.

“Over 150,000 people have fled to the plains near the Jordanian border due to intense strikes by the Syrian regime and its allies on cities and towns in Daraa’s countryside,” White Helmets spokesman Amer Abu Zaid told Anadolu Agency.

According to Anadolu Agency correspondents in Jordan, displaced Syrians have flocked to the border but the Jordanian authorities have not allowed them to enter the country.

On Thursday, Amman expressed its readiness to support the UN’s role in assisting displaced Syrians -- but without going so far as to open the border.

Tens of thousands of other displaced Syrians have fled towards towns near the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, Abu Zaid said.

Dozens of displaced Syrians staged a protest near the Golan region on Friday, holding up signs reading, “We need protection” and “Not opening the border is a crime against humanity”.

For the last 10 days, Daraa has been subject to intense aerial bombardments and ground attacks, with regime forces backed by Shia militia groups capturing the towns of Busra al-Harir and Nahta.

The UN on Tuesday warned that as many as 750,000 lives could be at risk in Daraa.

Reporting by Mohamad Misto:Writing by Satuk Bugra Kutlugun

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