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Iran Press TV

Around 350,0000 people have fled Syria's Idlib since Dec. 1: UN

Iran Press TV

Thursday, 16 January 2020 3:50 PM

The United Nations says around 350,000 Syrians, mostly women and children, have been displaced in the country's northwestern province of Idlib since early December last year.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in its latest situation report on Thursday that the humanitarian situation continues to deteriorate as a result of "escalating" hostilities.

David Swanson, Amman-based UN regional spokesman for Syria, also voiced concern over the latest displacement. "This latest wave of displacement compounds an already dire humanitarian situation on the ground in Idlib."

According to the United Nations, nearly three million people are trapped in militant-held populated parts of Idlib province.

On August 5, the Syrian army announced the start of an offensive against foreign-sponsored militants in Idlib after they failed to honor a ceasefire brokered by Russia and Turkey and continued to target civilian neighborhoods.

Under the Sochi agreement, all militants in the demilitarized zone that surrounds Idlib and also parts of the provinces of Aleppo and Hama were supposed to pull out heavy arms by October 17 last year, and Takfiri groups had to withdraw two days earlier.

The Aleppo province is situated next to Idlib. Since the Syrian government troops regained control of Aleppo at the end of 2016, the city has been targeted intermittently by an array of terror outfits.

The National Front for the Liberation of Syria is the main Turkish-backed militant alliance in the Idlib region, but the Takfiri Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), which is a coalition of different factions of terror outfits largely composed of Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, holds a large part of the province and the zone.

The HTS, which is said to be in control of some 60 percent of Idlib, has yet to announce its stance on the buffer zone deal.

Foreign-backed militancy, supported by the United States and many of its Western and regional allies, erupted in Syria in 2011.The Takfiri terrorists overran large swathes of Syria's territory before being vanquished by government forces and allies.

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