Creating new perspectives since 2009

Turkiye homes in northern Syria for voluntary return of Syria refugees

May 26, 2023 at 8:07 pm

Within the scope of the project initiated for the voluntary return of registered Syrians in Turkey, the foundation of permanent residences in Jarablus was laid by Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu and Qatar Development Fund Director Al-Kuwari on May 24, 2023 Jarabulus. [Ugur Yildirim/ dia images via Getty Images]

Ankara is currently working on the safe return of Syrian refugees in Turkiye to their country, Turkish President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has said, as Syrian citizens praise the peaceful atmosphere created in Syria after their voluntary return, Anadolu Agency reports.

Erdogan, on Thursday, also noted that “with the support of Qatar, the work to build houses in Syria, which can accommodate 1 million refugees, continues.”

Wafaa Mustafa Hajjaj, a Syrian citizen who lives with her child and nephews in Azaz in the countryside of Aleppo, told Anadolu that she came to Turkiye for treatment after she lost her eyesight in an attack on her village.

Hajjaj, who stayed in Turkiye for five years, pointed out that during each stay, Turkish people have always supported her and her family.

Hajjaj noted that she voluntarily returned to Syria.

An infographic titled "Falling number of Syrians refugees going home from Jordan, Lebanon" is created in Ankara, Turkiye on October 25, 2022 [Yılmaz Yücel/Anadolu Agency]0

An infographic titled “Falling number of Syrians refugees going home from Jordan, Lebanon” is created in Ankara, Turkiye on October 25, 2022 [Yılmaz Yücel/Anadolu Agency]0

The Syrian citizen hailed the Turkish effort in preparing the infrastructure for the Syrian refugees’ return.

“The camp where we reside has water and electricity, and the needs are met through solar energy,” Hajjaj told Anadolu.

She stressed the safety of the area she currently resides, adding: “I believe that the rest of the Syrian refugees will return to their homeland whenever security prevails.”

“These areas are now safe because of Turkiye’s presence,” she added.

Turkish Interior Minister, Suleyman Soylu, on Wednesday attended a groundbreaking ceremony for the project, “Voluntary, Safe, Honourable Return Project” in the northern Syria district of Jarablus, where he said a total of 240,000 houses will be constructed at nine separate locations across the Idlib and Afrin regions in the next three years.

Since 2016, Turkiye has launched four successful anti-terror operations across its border in northern Syria to prevent the formation of a terror corridor and enable peaceful settlement by locals: Euphrates Shield (2016), Olive Branch (2018), Peace Spring (2019) and Spring Shield (2020).

Thanks to these operations, the pace of the return of Syrian refugees from Turkiye to their country has accelerated.

More than 3.7 million Syrians currently reside in Turkiye, making it the world’s top refugee-hosting country.

Following the start of a civil war in Syria in 2011, Turkiye adopted an “open-door” policy for Syrians fleeing persecution and brutality.

Syria has been embroiled in a vicious civil war since early 2011, when the Bashar Al-Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with unexpected ferocity.

Hundreds of thousands of people have been killed, and more than 10 million others displaced, according to UN estimates.

READ: Anger and fear among Syrians amid Turkiye opposition anti-immigrant campaign