Russia, Syria call for urgent evacuation of Syrian IDP camps

The Russian and Syrian Joint Coordination Headquarters in charge of the settlement of Syrians fleeing civil war on Wednesday called for the urgent evacuation of the Rukban and Al-Hol camps for internally displaced persons (IDP), where the living conditions are worsening.

It is necessary to accelerate the evacuation as high temperatures in July and August, as well as the water and food shortage, will make the lives of people in the camps more difficult, it said in a statement, stressing that any delay may result in the deaths of the IDP.

The Rukban camp is home to 50,000 displaced Syrians, who are suffering from the harsh humanitarian situation because of lack of supplies.

Thanks to the joint efforts of Russia and Syria, the exit from Rukban in southern Syria has started with about 13,000 Syrians having left the camp, the statement said.

Syria’s state news agency SANA reported last week that a new batch of civilians had left the battered Rukban camp and reached government areas in the country’s central region.

The situation in the Al-Hol camp in northeastern Syria is even worse as it is overcrowded.

“The camp is overcrowded and although humanitarian partners have rushed to scale up, critical needs remain in key sectors including health, shelter, water, sanitation and hygiene,” said Najat Rochdi, a senior humanitarian adviser to the United Nations Special Envoy for Syria, last week in Geneva.