ISIL in Yarmouk, Damascus

”To know what it is like in Yarmouk, turn off your electricity, water, heating, eat once a day, live in the dark, live by burning wood” – Anas, Yarmouk resident. Photo: The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA)
”To know what it is like in Yarmouk, turn off your electricity, water, heating, eat once a day, live in the dark, live by burning wood” – Anas, Yarmouk resident. Photo: The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA)

BY MICHAEL TAOUK
@miketaouk

The Islamic state of Iraq and Levant group (ISIL) has taken over the west side of Yarmouk in southern Damascus, an area that harbours large numbers of Palestinian refugees.

Director of Political Affairs Anwar Abdel Hadi said in an interview that fighters from ISIL launched an assault this morning on Yarmouk and took over the majority of the refugee camp.

An activist from Yarmouk told al-Jazeera that ISIL fighters from neighbouring town Hajr al-Aswad also captured areas from the Palestinian group Bait al Maqdis, and that the fighting has been continuous. He denied reports that ISIL had taken over the whole area of Yarmouk .

A Yarmouk resident said the main reason for the attack was because of recent arrests of ISIL fighters accused of assassinating the leader of Bait al Maqdis.

The southern city of Yarmouk was an area that accommodated 160,000 Syrian and Palestinian refugees, but due to the recent terror it has refused 18,000 more, while many have fled to nearby towns.

The terror has left nothing for the residents to eat or drink.

On Wednesday the Jordan government ordered the main border crossing to be closed due the crisis in Syria.

LINKS:
UNRWA: Voices From Yarmouk

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