News Column

Syrian Refugees Flood Lebanon

March 18, 2013

Taylor Luck, Jordan Times, Amman

Some 1,500 Syrians crossed into Jordan early Sunday, pushing the total of new arrivals in the month of March to over 27,000, according to the Jordan Armed Forces.

Around 70 injured Syrians were among Sunday's influx, security sources said, including 10 rebel fighters wounded in recent clashes with regime forces.

Authorities transferred the injured to public hospitals in the border cities of Mafraq and Ramtha, the sources added.

Sunday's influx came as regime and rebel forces continued their battle for control of the Jordanian-Syrian border, with reports of intense clashes in several villages across southern Syria.

Jordanian security sources reported heavy gunfire and shelling in the Syrian border villages of Tal Shihab and Shajarah on Saturday and late Sunday, while rebel sources confirmed intense clashes in the southern city of Daraa and its outlying villages.

The clashes are part a renewed offensive by the Free Syrian Army (FSA) to capture the border, which saw rebel forces briefly capture two strategic crossing points over the weekend.

As part of reported rebel gains throughout the southern region, FSA forces reportedly seized the Ramtha and Nasib/Jaber crossings within a 24-hour span between Thursday and Friday before being pushed back by a regime aerial assault.

Jordan has opened its borders to over 455,000 Syrians since the onset of the conflict in March, 2011, and the number is expected to surpass one million before the end of this year.

Source: (c)2013 the Jordan Times (Amman, Jordan) Distributed by MCT Information Services

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