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UN says half million Palestinian refugees suffer in Syria

Published on Jan 27, 2013 6:11 AM
Palestinian refugees, some of whom fled the Yarmuk refugee camp in Damascus, attend class in the "Palestine" Palestinian refugee camp in the Syrian city of Homs on January 21, 2013. Syrian warplanes launched raids on two towns east of Damascus, a monitoring group said, as a total overnight electricity blackout in the capital began to lift in the morning. -- PHOTO: AFP

JERUSALEM (AFP) - The UN agency for Palestinian refugees on Saturday urged donors to remember more than half a million Palestinians caught up in the Syrian conflict when they meet at a conference in Kuwait next week.

"While all civilians in Syria are bearing the brunt of the violence, the present situation of Palestinians in Syria is exceptional," UNRWA Commissioner General Filippo Grandi said in a statement. "They are becoming two-time refugees," Mr Grandi said.

"Sadly, some 525,000 Palestine refugees in Syria are now suffering." According to UN figures, more than 60,000 people have perished in the conflict that erupted in March 2011 after troops brutally repressed a popular uprising against the regime of President Bashar al-Assad.

"As donors make their pledges in Kuwait, I call on them to remember the Palestine refugees," Mr Grandi added Kuwait hosts on Wednesday an international donors conference to raise humanitarian aid to civilians caught up in Syria's bloody conflict.