UN rushes aid to Turkey for Syrian refugees

//UN rushes aid to Turkey for Syrian refugees

UN rushes aid to Turkey for Syrian refugees

The United Nations is sending aid of Blankets, sleeping mats and kitchen sets, with 20 truckloads of aid already supplied to Syrian refugees in Turkey.

As many as 70,000 Syrian Kurds poured into Turkey since last Friday fleeing attacks by Islamic State jihadists in northeastern Syria.

The UNHCR “is stepping up its response to help Turkey come to the aid of an estimated 70,000 Syrians crossing into Turkey”, most in the past 24 hours, the agency said in a statement.

The UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Antonio Guterres, praised Turkey for taking in the refugees.

The country is building two camps with UNHCR help to shelter the Syrian Kurds.

Earlier, US Ambassador to the United Nations Samatha Power has predicted that the US would not be alone if it launches air strikes against Islamic State jihadists in Syria.

She said no decisions have been reached yet.

The US envoy to the United Nations’ comments came as the US puts together an international coalition to fight the IS group,

The group has seized large areas of Syria and Iraq in a bloody drive that has included beheadings of western hostages.

France has joined the US in air strikes against the group in Iraq, but the IS strongholds in Syria have so far been spared.

In a television interview on ABC’s “This Week,” Ms Power told host George Stephanopoulos: “I will make you a prediction, George, which is that we will not do the airstrikes alone if the president decides to do the airstrikes.”

The Syrian piece of the US-led campaign is unusually complicated because the country is immersed in a civil war.

The war pits both IS and more moderate, US-backed rebels against the regime of President Bashar al-Assad.

US Secretary of State John Kerry this week suggested that even Iran, which backs President Assad, has a role to play against the IS group.

She depicted President Assad, however, as an “unreliable partner for us,” accusing him of not going after the IS group with his own forces and buying oil from it when it has taken over oil fields.

“And we would urge Iran actually to use its leverage over that regime in order to change its tactics and bring about the political solution we need to really get at one of the root causes of this crisis,” she said on the ABC show.

IS fighters closing in on Kurdish border town

Meanwhile, IS fighters are closing in on Syria’s third largest Kurdish town.

This is after they captured several surrounding villages, sending almost 70,000 Kurds fleeing across the border into Turkey.

Fighters are believed to be within 10km of the strategic border town of Ain al-Arab, or Kobane as it is known in Kurdish, according to the British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

The Kurdish militia who have been battling to defend the town have lost 27 fighters since the offensive began last Tuesday, the Observatory said.

IS has lost at least 37 of their fighters, according to the monitoring group, which relies on a network of doctors and activists for its reports.

“The great majority of those killed on the jihadist side have been foreigners, among them Chechens and Gulf Arabs,” Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman told AFP.

IS have captured more than 60 villages around Kobane over the past five days, which has triggered an exodus of terrified civilians.

Capture of the town would give the jihadists unbroken control of a big swathe of the border with Turkey.


RTÉ News – News Headlines

By | 2014-09-21T21:13:07+00:00 September 21st, 2014|Headlines|0 Comments