UN: Over 100 Murders in Syria’s al-Hol Camp Since Jan 2021

A general view of al-Hol camp in Syria. Reuters file photo
A general view of al-Hol camp in Syria. Reuters file photo
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UN: Over 100 Murders in Syria’s al-Hol Camp Since Jan 2021

A general view of al-Hol camp in Syria. Reuters file photo
A general view of al-Hol camp in Syria. Reuters file photo

More than 100 people, including many women, have been murdered in a Syrian camp in just 18 months, the UN said Tuesday, demanding countries repatriate their citizens.

The Al-Hol camp is increasingly unsafe and the child detainees are being condemned to a life with no future, said Imran Riza, the UN resident coordinator in Syria.

Al-Hol, in the Kurdish-controlled northeast, was meant as a temporary detention facility.

However, it still holds about 56,000 people, mostly Syrians and Iraqis, some of whom maintain links with ISIS, which seized swathes of Iraq and Syria in 2014.

The rest are citizens of other countries, including children and other relatives of ISIS fighters.

Some 94 percent of the detainees are women and children, Riza, who has visited Al-Hol a handful of times, told reporters in Geneva.

"It's a very harsh place and it's become an increasingly unsafe place," AFP quoted Riza as saying.

There have been "around 106 murders since January last year in the camp" and "many" of the victims were women, he added.

"There's a great deal of gender-based violence... There's a lot of no-go areas."

The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said violence was spiking in the camp, with another murder Tuesday -- the seventh since June 11.

Out of 24 people murdered inside the camp this year, 16 were women, the Observatory added.

Riza said there were around 27,000 Iraqi detainees, 18-19,000 Syrians and around 12,000 third-country citizens.

While there have been some repatriations to Iraq, many other countries which "need to be accepting their people back" were refusing to do so.

"The majority of the population there are children. They are innocent. If you leave them in a place like Al-Hol, you're essentially condemning them to not having a future."

Riza said that when boys get to 12, 13 and 14, they are taken away from their families and put into a different center, where their future is one of radicalization and joining a militia.

"The only solution is emptying the camp," he said.



US Military Pier Operations in Gaza Suspended after Piece Breaks Off

US Navy personnel construct a JLOTS, which stands for "Joint Logistics Over-the Shore" temporary pier which will provide a ship-to-shore distribution system to help deliver humanitarian aid into Gaza, in an undated handout picture in the Mediterranean Sea. (US Central Command/Handout via Reuters/File Photo)
US Navy personnel construct a JLOTS, which stands for "Joint Logistics Over-the Shore" temporary pier which will provide a ship-to-shore distribution system to help deliver humanitarian aid into Gaza, in an undated handout picture in the Mediterranean Sea. (US Central Command/Handout via Reuters/File Photo)
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US Military Pier Operations in Gaza Suspended after Piece Breaks Off

US Navy personnel construct a JLOTS, which stands for "Joint Logistics Over-the Shore" temporary pier which will provide a ship-to-shore distribution system to help deliver humanitarian aid into Gaza, in an undated handout picture in the Mediterranean Sea. (US Central Command/Handout via Reuters/File Photo)
US Navy personnel construct a JLOTS, which stands for "Joint Logistics Over-the Shore" temporary pier which will provide a ship-to-shore distribution system to help deliver humanitarian aid into Gaza, in an undated handout picture in the Mediterranean Sea. (US Central Command/Handout via Reuters/File Photo)

A part of the US military's pier off Gaza has broken off, rendering it temporarily inoperable, two US officials said, in the latest blow to efforts to deliver humanitarian aid to Palestinians.

The US officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said bad weather was believed to be the reason that the part had broken off. They did not say how big the part was or speculate on how long it would take for the pier to resume operations.

The pier was announced by US President Joe Biden in March and involved the military assembling the floating structure off the coast. Estimated to cost $320 million for the first 90 days and involve about 1,000 US service members, it went into operation two weeks ago.

Since the pier began operations, the United Nations has transported 137 trucks of aid from the pier - the equivalent of 900 metric tons - said a UN World Food Program (WFP) spokesperson.