Palestinians Flood Lebanon as Clashes Erupt in Syria

Hundreds of Palestinians refugees living in Syria flooded into Lebanon on Monday after clashes raged between Palestinian factions loyal to and opposed to 
A Reuters witness at the border said they came in buses and cars piled high with belongings. A Lebanese security source said the refugees from Damascus' Yarmouk Camp suburb had tried to flee on Sunday but the road was blocked by fighting.

Opposition activists said Syrian fighter jets bombed Yarmouk on Sunday, killing at least 25 people sheltering in a mosque. They said troops and tanks were gathered outside the camp on Monday, and clashes inside continued.

Syria hosts half a million Palestinian refugees, most living in Yarmouk and descendants of those admitted after the creation of Israel in 1948, and has always cast itself as a champion of the Palestinian struggle, sponsoring several guerrilla factions.

Both Assad's government and the mainly Sunni Muslim Syrian rebels have enlisted and armed Palestinians as the uprising has developed into a civil war.

The camp, on the southern fringes of Damascus, falls within a swathe of outlying suburbs running from the east to southwest of the capital from which rebels have been trying to push into the city center and the heart of 42 years of Assad family rule. Assad's forces have held them back.

Abu Khalil Jalili, a Palestinian who entered Lebanon with his family, said others we not so lucky: "We came here, but most people sleep on the streets in Damascus."


SOURCE: The Jerusalem Post
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