The Palestinian community in Britain has announced the start of an unprecedented initiative to aid Palestinian refugees in the Yarmouk refugee camp in the Syrian capital Damascus.
About 20,000 Palestinians are currently trapped in the Yarmouk camp and suffering under an extreme siege. The UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian refugees has not been able to deliver any humanitarian aid to those in need inside the camp since last September.
The UK-based initiative was disclosed during a meeting of the Palestine Forum. Attending the Forum were Deputy Secretary of Fatah’s Revolutionary Council Dr Sabri Saidam, head of the British Muslim Initiative Muhammad Sawalha and other prominent members of the Palestinian community in the UK, as well as representatives from the Palestine embassy in London.
The attendees represented the Palestinian political spectrum and have decided to form a special committee to plan for the initiative’s activities, which will include sending aid to the affected families in the Yarmouk refugee camp and highlighting their suffering to the world.
In his opening speech, Dr Saidam explained that: “the political situation affecting the region as a whole compels us as Palestinians to work hard to unite the various political movements, and to go beyond courtesies into actual programmes to save the Palestinian cause.”
Meanwhile, Sawalha stressed that the Palestinians agree at large; however, they need to overcome the minor details which usually undermine their efforts.
The head of the Palestine Forum, Ziad Aloul, noted that the initiative is the first of its kind in Britain and aims to enhance cooperation within the Palestinian community, which would reflect positively on Palestinian refugees everywhere, especially those in Syria who are suffering from exceptional conditions. Aloul hopes that the Forum will help end the Palestinian divisions.