The Birth of This Palestinian Refugee Problem
Hamas puts down protest following Syrian displacement of 10,000
Following the Syrian navy’s shelling of the main port city of Latakia, approximately 10,000 Palestinians living in a neighborhood there have been displaced, according to the U.N. Relief and Works Agency, which oversees Palestinian refugee issues (“A forgotten population has now become a disappeared population,” said a spokesperson). “We urge the Syrian authorities to stop the attack on the refugee camp immediately,” said a spokesperson for Palestinian President Abbas.
The leaders of Hamas agreed, if by agreed you mean forcefully ended an anti-Assad protest that was being held in solidarity with the thousands of Latakia Palestinians. Hamas put the kibosh on the protest because organizers had not received a permit, and not at all because Hamas is headquartered in Damascus and sheltered by the regime there. Meanwhile, while the displaced Palestinians’ whereabouts are largely unknown—some hypothesize that they have in large part fled for Aleppo, Syria’s second-largest city—other Sunni citizens of Latakia are being rounded up and sent to a sports stadium in town. And no soccer match has been planned.
Syrian Enclave of Palestinians Nearly Deserted After Assault [NYT]
Hamas Disperses Anti-Assad Protest in Gaza [Haaretz]
Analysis: Assad Puts Hamas in Corner Over Syrian Assault [Reuters/JPost]
Earlier: Reform Just a Watchword in This Administration