UN urges Jordan to allow 12,000 desperate Syrian refugees stranded at border
Dec 9, Amman: The United Nations refugee agency expressed concern for nearly 12,000 people trying to flee the country who are now stranded in remote areas along the north eastern Jordanian border, and urged the Government of Jordan to allow them entry, prioritizing admission for the most vulnerable.
The population includes about 11,000 people in Rukban (about 8 kilometres to the west of the point at which the Iraq, Syria, and Jordan borders meet) and 1,000 people in Hadalat (some 90 km further west), and has been growing in recent weeks, according to the UN.
“It includes elderly people, others who are sick or wounded, children, women, and others who are vulnerable and need help, Melissa Fleming, spokesperson for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), told the regular press briefing in Geneva.
Fleming added that the refugees are gathering near an earthen wall or 'berm' on Jordanian territory in a rocky area devoid of shade, water or vegetation and that the number of people congregating at these locations rose sharply from 4,000 to 12,000 in November, following the recent intensification of conflict in Syria.
The UN also appealed the Government of Jordan to allow refugees stranded at the border to enter the country, prioritizing entry for the most vulnerable adults and children, including serious and emergency medical and surgical cases, pregnant women, children below six months together with their families and the severely disabled,” said Ms. Fleming, highlighting the “excellent working relationship” the UN agency shares with the Government.
At the same time, she acknowledged the serious impact of the Syria conflict on Jordan’s security and said that UNHCR recognizes the tremendous contribution of Jordan in hosting over 630,000 refugees, which has put a heavy strain on its infrastructure and economy.
The Oslo Times