Islamic State causes displacement of 200 thousand Syrian Kurds

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Displaced Kurdish families from Kobane. File photo

ARA News 

Kobane, Syria – As violence mounted in the Syrian Kurdish area of Kobane, thousands of displaced civilians continued crossing into Turkey for the second week.

More than 200 thousand civilians fled the city of Kobane and its environs, northern Syria, heading to different Turkish cities, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

Kobane’s civilians reluctantly evacuated a 3000 km2 area following the outbreak of clashes between the Kurdish forces of the Popular Protection Units (YPG) and extremists of the Islamic State (IS/ISIS) -al Qaeda offshoot.

Ahmad Qrobak, a resident of Kobane who crossed into Turkey last week, pointed out to ARA News that refugees from Kobane are scattered over 200 villages in the southern Turkish city of Suruc and also in other distant cities.

“People of Suruc shared their food and private properties with their siblings from Kobane,” said Qrobak.

People of Suruc built a mud-ceiling room for Mohammad Berkul and his family and helped them before any relief or governmental organization arrived in the region to assist the displaced people of Kobane.

“More than 35 families from my village in Kobane’s eastern countryside fled to Suruc where they received immediate help,” Hakmo Ibrahim, 70, told ARA News.

Many refugees stayed in Suruc’s city center living in collective accommodations such as mosques, tents and buildings of public institutions.

Based on Suruc municipality, more than 20 thousand Kurdish refugees from Kobane are receiving aid from the municipality itself as well as a number of humanitarian and relief organizations and charities, such as the Turkish IHH, the Turkish Red Crescent, the Turkish AFAD, the Qatari Red Crescent and Bahar Relief Organization.

Volunteer activists working in Suruc pointed out that the lack of coordination among the different relief groups led to difficulties in distribution of assistance.

“Fifty families from Kobane live now together in a collective accommodation in Suruc. Last week, some of them received aid 3 or 4 times while others did not at all,” said Ali Muslim, a refugee from Kobane.

Despite the efforts to assist Kobane’s refugees in Turkey, many of them still live in open air, on pavements, under trees or in tents. According to observers, the sudden influx of displaced families from the war-torn area of Kobane caused shortage of basic supplies and it will still take some time until those people’s needs are satisfied.

 

Reporting by: Jan Ali

Source: ARA News

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