GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – The United Nations’s UNSMIS (supervision authority for Syria) is preparing to leave Syria after four months, one month longer than its initial assignment 21 April 2012. It was assigned the task of monitoring the situation and helping to implement the UN peace plan for the region. As it leaves, Syria remains in the grip of the conflict, with 1.5 million displaced persons, according to Geneva-based Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre.
“1.5 million people in Syria have lost their homes and livelihoods since the outbreak of the uprisings that swept the region in 2011. ‘Syria is in an internal displacement crisis,’ says IDMC’s Syria analyst Guillaume Charron. ‘For hundreds of thousands of men, women and children being forced from their homes and livelihoods by the current violence, hunger and dehydration is as much of a threat as the bombs and the bullets.’”
The fighting and related problems continue to cause a massive outflow of people: 40 percent of the 65,000 Syrian refugees at nine camps in Turkey alone have arrived in the past month, the UNHCR (High Commissioner for Refugees) said Friday.