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New batches of civilians leave Rukban cam in southern Syria, al-Azraq camp in Jordan

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Displaced Syrians are seen upon reaching the Nasib border crossing after leaving al-Azraq refugee camp in Jordan on June 19, 2019. (Photo by SANA)

Batches of displaced people have reached crossing points in the Syrian desert after leaving the al-Rukban refugee camp in southeastern Syria, where thousands of civilians are stranded as foreign-sponsored Takfiri militant groups are hampering their safe exit to government-controlled areas, and Jordan.

Syria’s official news agency (SANA) reported that tens of evacuees from Rukban camp arrived at the Jlaighem crossing in the eastern countryside of the central province of Homs on Wednesday. They are expected to be transported to their liberated hometowns soon.

Paramedics and volunteers from the Syrian Arab Red Crescent provided medical care and distributed aid among the displaced people as authorities registered their names to be transported to makeshift centers in Homs before being driven to their hometowns and villages.

The United Nations says about 45,000 people, mostly women and children, are trapped inside Rukban, where conditions are desperate. This is while Geneva-based international aid agency Doctors Without Borders has put the number at some 60,000.

Last October, the so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said people in al-Rukban had been without access to food and humanitarian aid for several months, highlighting that the tough situation was further complicated with a closed border by Jordan.

On March 6, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said the United States needed the Rukban refugee camp in order to justify its illegitimate military presence in Syria.

"The fact that people are not allowed to leave [the camp] and are held hostage makes one suggest that the US needs this camp to continue justifying its illegitimate presence there,” Lavrov said at a joint press conference with Kuwaiti Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah al-Khalid al-Hamad Al Sabah in Kuwait City.

He added, “This is in line with the US policy aimed at creating something like a quasi-state on the eastern bank of the Euphrates River. It does not want these territories to get back under the control of Syria’s legitimate authorities.”

Separately, scores of displaced Syrians, who had fled their towns and villages after Takfiri terrorists overran them, have returned from Jordan.

Colonel Mazen Ghandour, head of nasib border crossing, said in a statement carried by SANA that border guards received a batch of displaced Syrian families from al-Azraq refugee camp in Jordan, noting that workers at the crossing are preparing buses to transport the refugees to the nearest makeshift camps besides trucks to carry their belongings.

Syria has been gripped by foreign-backed militancy since March 2011. The Syrian government says the Israeli regime and its Western and regional allies have been aiding Takfiri terrorist groups there.

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