Over 20,000 people fled Idlib toward Turkish border

Over 20,000 people fled Idlib toward Turkish border

Over 20,000 people fled Idlib toward Turkish border

Over 20,000 civilians have fled Syria’s northwestern region of Idlib to places near the Turkish border in the last two days, amid heightened bombardments by the Syrian regime and Russia, state-run Anadolu Agency reported on Jan. 9.

Mohamed al-Hallaj, director of the Response Coordinators Team, told Anadolu Agency that the new wave of refugees had come over the past two days, amid bombardment by forces aligned with the Bashar Assad regime despite the area being a de-escalation zone.

According to the figures Anadolu Agency provided, the number of civilians who have been displaced since last November has reached 370,000 since last November.

Nevertheless, the Idlib tent camps fail to meet the needs of displaced Syrians because of the increased number of displaced persons. Officials say the camps have neither enough space to set up more tents nor the necessary infrastructure.

Displaced families are in urgent need of shelters, tents, blankets and beds.

In September 2018, Turkey and Russia agreed to turn Idlib into a de-escalation zone in which acts of aggression are expressly prohibited.

Since then, more than 1,300 civilians have been killed in attacks by the regime and Russian forces in the de-escalation zone as the cease-fire continues to be violated.

Over a million Syrians have moved near the Turkish border due to intense attacks over the last year.

After a Turkish cabinet meeting in December last year, presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said Turkey expects a halt to these attacks as soon as possible through a new cease-fire.

According to the National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces, the Idlib province is home to around 3 million civilians, 75 percent of them women and children.

Since the eruption of the bloody civil war in Syria in 2011, Turkey has taken in some 3.7 million Syrians who fled their country, making Turkey the world's top refugee-hosting country.

Ankara has so far spent $40 billion for the refugees, according to official figures.