Turkey shoulders aid burden as crisis enters sixth day
Turkish state, NGOs and political parties have sent aid to the southeastern Turkish town of Suruc receiving immigration from Syrian Kurdish refugees.

As an unprecedented refugee influx into Turkey continues for almost a week, humanitarian aid is still flowing to the border town of Suruc.

However, there is still much to do and the international community needs to help, U.N. agency workers on the ground have said.

More than 140,000 refugees have fled to the Turkish side of the barbed wire barrier separating Suruc from the Kurdish city of Kobani; the northern Syrian city has been on the front line of an offensive by the Islamist extremist ISIL group.

Turkey's Emergency and Disaster Management Presidency – known as AFAD – said shelters for almost 10,000 people had been allocated, including a boarding school and a new tent camp near the border with a capacity of 6,000.

It said it will also establish further tents for 24,000 people in upcoming days.

One refugee, Amine al-Hassan, told the Anadolu Agency that she was thankful to aid campaigners as her family could not find a hot meal for days, despite being only 10 kilometers from their home in Syria.

Meanwhile, a U.N. cargo plane has landed in Turkey, carrying mattresses, plastic sheets, kitchen sets and blankets, according to a UNHCR official.

Selin Unal, a spokesperson for the refugee agency, told AA that aid materials for 200,000 people would be ready in Turkey.

Further aid is on its way with a road convoy from Copenhagen and via sea from Dubai to Mersin in southern Turkey; these are expected to arrive on 11 October.

However, Unal said Turkey needs more international support as it has sheltered a number of refugees in the last week equal to what European countries have accepted since the beginning of Syrian crisis three years ago.

The emergency body, AFAD, is serving daily meals for almost 10,000 people and providing more than 40,000 liters of clean water via almost 2,200 workers.

The Turkish Red Crescent is also distributing meals for 10,000 Kurdish refugees, who have spread all across Suruc town, some filling mosques, parks and storehouses.

On Friday, 12 trucks sent by the Barzani Charity Foundation from northern Iraq came to the Mursitpinar border crossing carrying aid materials into Kobani.

Meanwhile, other Turkish relief organizations have given support to refugees in terms of food and health care. Turkey’s IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation is providing three daily meals for 5,000 people and is examining patients in a mobile clinic in central Suruc.

The mainly Kurdish refugees are also being medically examined by the Alliance of International Doctors, according to their representative Eyup Hazar.

"A medical truck allows us to examine 100 refugees daily in Suruc and nearby villages,” Hazar told Anadolu Agency.

He said that many children and women have upper respiratory tract infections or skin problems, as well as nutrition disorders.

Suruc Municipality is also organizing an aid campaign with food packets, blankets and clean water, according to spokesman Mehmet Sakir.

Political parties in Turkey, such as the Republican People's Party and the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party have also sent members and aid to the region.

Thousands of Syrian refugees continue to pass through the barbed wire fences under security controls during the day. Some are attempting to return to the homes on the Syrian side of the frontier, despite the proximity of fighting between Kurdish forces and ISIL militants.

AA
Last Modified: 2014-09-26 08:18:44
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