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Syria refugees burn clothes for heating

A view of a snow-covered refugee camp in Arsal, Lebanon on 10 January 2019 [Jihad Muhammad Behlok/Anadolu Agency]
A view of a snow-covered refugee camp in Arsal, Lebanon on 10 January 2019 [Jihad Muhammad Behlok/Anadolu Agency]

Syrian refugees are being forced to burn their clothes as a source of heating, as the cold weather snap continues to leave them in dire living conditions.

The continuous rainfall, along with a record decline in temperature in recent weeks, has pushed thousands of the Syrian refugees – who have nothing to deal with the severe winter conditions – to burn their clothes for heating, Anadolu Agency reported.

Refugees in those camps located in the Syrian governorate of Idlib – in the north of the country – do not have electricity or oil to use for heating. “I feel crushed because I have no means to warm up my ten children,” a Syrian mother Um-Khalaf told Anadolu. “We did not have winter clothes and now we are obliged to burn clothes, old shoes and other plastic kits for heating,” she added.

Um-Yassin, another of the refugees, said: “The issue is not only related to the shortage of oil. The refugees camp is plunged in mud. We have nothing to eat or drink. We are unable to leave our tents to look for our needs.”

Abboud Abu-Basim said: “We burn tyres and plastic material for heating. We know this harms the inhabitants of the camp, mainly children.”

Subhi Wadha said: “We are obliged to walk in this mud for long distances in order to get bread. Animals cannot eat the bread we eat.”

Read: Syria refugees flee as camps buried in Lebanon snow storm

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