300 Yarmouk refugees to be transferred for medical treatment
Published Tuesday 07/01/2014 (updated) 08/01/2014 21:29
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Around 300 Palestinian refugees from Yarmouk camp are due to be transferred for medical treatment in Damascus, a PFLP-GC official said Tuesday.
Hussam Arafat said that the Syrian government accepted a request from PFLP-GC Deputy Secretary-General Talal Naji to make the transfer, which will begin on Wednesday.
The Syrian Red Crescent and ambulances will be used to transfer the refugees to medical centers and hospitals in the the capital.
Arafat said it was "urgent" that competing militias and factions ended the crisis in the camp.
Earlier, a PLO official said that four militant factions remain in Yarmouk camp in violation of an agreement to secure peace for its residents.
PLO executive committee member Ahmad Majdalani told Ma'an that four factions remain in the Yarmouk camp in Damascus, despite the fact that nine factions -- including the four -- previously signed an agreement promising to withdraw.
The factions are Jebhat al-Nusra, Daish, Ibn Taymiyya, and a fourth unnamed faction, he said, referring primarily to a number of Wahhabi militant groups opposed to the Syrian regime.
The withdrawal of the factions is meant to allow the camp to become a neutral zone and to pressure the Syrian regime to end the 7-month-long siege of the camp, which has led to at least 30 deaths from starvation.
Fatah leader Abbas Zaki told Ma'an in mid-October that Yarmouk's population of 250,000 had dwindled to 18,000 after two and a half years of conflict in Syria.
The Syrian conflict, which began as peaceful protests in March 2011 but developed into a civil war, has killed more than 120,000 people and prompted millions to flee their homes.