Syria + 1 more

UNRWA Syria crisis situation update, 28 December 2012

Situation Report
Originally published
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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.

28 December 2012

Damascus and the surrounding areas –Yarmouk camp is reportedly calm and some refugees are now attempting to salvage items from their homes. Thus far, the situation remains uncertain and unsafe enough to deter significant numbers of refugees from returning to their homes. Two UNRWA clinics were looted yesterday and all facilities in the camp remain closed. UNRWA staff have been advised not to enter for any reason.

An explosion went off next to an UNRWA facility in Sbeineh camp, killing four and injuring several others. All facilities have been closed as a precaution.

Dummar, Jobar, Mezzeh, Ellianss, Khan Eshieh and Sit Zeinab, Rukn Eddin were all calm with Mezzeh and Khan Eshieh camps hosting internally displaced persons (IDPs) in their facilities. UNRWA staff operated a school and health centre at Khan Eshieh and Ellianss. Rukn Eddin hosted IDPs in one school while another was operational. One health centre is operational in Dummar and one school in Jobar.

Sporadic clashes and explosions occurred throughout the night and part of the day in Qaboun and Dummar. All facilities were closed in Qaboun while Dummar is hosting IDPs with one health centre operating to assist camp residents and IDPs. Barzah was the scene of sporadic clashes throughout the night with one school operating at the camp.

Clashes occurred throughout the night at Husseiniyeh with shells landing in the camp but no casualties reported. The camp was reportedly calm during the day and all facilities were operational to staff living there.

Although the Sit Zeinab camp was calm, clashes and explosions were reported in the surrounding areas throughout the night. One health centre remains operational to staff who are residents of the camp.

The neighbourhoods of Jaramana and Khan Dannoun in Damascus were reportedly calm yesterday and UNRWA facilities are operational in these areas.

Sounds of mortar fire and helicopter activity lessened near the Agency’s Syria Field Office and most staff reported to work.

UNRWA’s Damascus Training Centre (DTC) continues to house IDPs who are sheltering in classrooms and dormitories. They are receiving 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. Shelter is still a pressing priority and UNRWA is doing its best to accommodate all IDPs.

Dera’a, Hama, and Latakia cities were all reportedly calm and all UNRWA facilities operational in the area. Latakia began sheltering IDPs arriving from Aleppo and Damascus.

Two incidents occurred in Ein el Tal and Neirab camps. In Ein el Tal, clashes by the warring sides in Syria were reported throughout the night and in the early morning hours, resulting in ten injuries and the death of a refugee. In Neirab, two trucks carrying humanitarian supplies, including food baskets and medical supplies, were stopped by armed elements. One truck was taken away with the cargo, while another was returned without the cargo.

Long periods of electricity-cuts were reported in Homs but all UNRWA facilities remained operational. Fighter jets and concentrated air strikes occurred in the areas surrounding the Homs refugee camp on Wednesday, with reports of shelling throughout the day. UNRWA staff distributed food bags to 260 families.

The Leramon, Bustan al Qasr, Bustan al Basha, Bani Zyad and Ein al Tal neighbourhoods in Aleppo were the scenes of clashes and in some instances, shelling, throughout the night and during the day, although both Ein el Tal and Neirab camps were both calm.

UNRWA staff distributed cash to 125 families and food bags to 250 families in Dera’a on Wednesday. The Agency also distributed food rations to 30 families in Hama on Wednesday and 800 blankets on Thursday.


To read more detailed information about events throughout the country, sign up to receive weekly updates on our humanitarian response in Syria at

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 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