Amidst north Aleppo chaos, thousands of displaced Syrians pour into ‘relative safety’ of Kurdish-held Afrin

Syria Direct reports: Thousands of civilians displaced by a major ongoing regime offensive in the northern Aleppo countryside are seeking refuge in Afrin, a pocket of Kurdish-held territory in the province’s northwest perceived as “comparatively more secure and stable,” an Afrin activist told Syria Direct Thursday.

Nestled in the northwest corner of Aleppo province, Afrin is the westernmost of the four cantons making up Rojava, a swathe of Kurdish territories in northern Syria held and primarily administrated the Democratic Union Party (PYD).

“Displaced people started to pour in around a week ago,” Sheikhmous al-Afrini, a Kurdish aid activist in Afrin told Syria Direct on Thursday.

In images posted by local news page Efrin Anha on social media on Wednesday, displaced north Aleppo residents sit surrounded by rugs, mattresses and plastic bags holding the possessions they were able to bring with them.

Russia has reportedly launched hundreds of air raids using cluster munitions and vacuum missiles in recent days in the north Aleppo countryside to support regime forces operating on the ground, pro-opposition Shaam News Network reported. The bombings are “like rain,” Smart News correspondent Muhammad Najm a-Din told Syria Direct on Wednesday. [Continue reading…]

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