Sporadic clashes continued last night in Nahr El Bared camp as Fatah al-Islam militants fired off bursts of automatic gunfire which was met with anti-tank fire from Lebanese troops, according to the press reports. The majority of families (an estimated 21,000 persons) from the besieged northern Palestinian refugee camp of Nahr el-Bared have fled mostly to Beddawi camp in Tripoli. However, thousands remain trapped inside under extremely difficult humanitarian conditions. There have been unconfirmed media reports saying that the militants are using those left inside Nahr el-Bared as human shields.
According to UNRWA figures 5,325 refugee families have left the camp since fighting began one week ago. There are 31,478 registered refugees in Nahr El Bared camp but the Agency estimates the numbers of those actually living in the camp at around 27000.
The Lebanese Government has vowed to finish off this “terrorist movement”, but continues to stress its quarrel is not with the general Palestinian community. The army has stationed more troops around the camp, which is already ringed by hundreds of soldiers, backed by artillery and tanks.
Palestinian factions, meanwhile, have been scrambling to find a negotiated solution to end the siege and avert what many fear would be a bloody battle between the Lebanese army and Fatah al-Islam.
SITUATION BY AREA:
Situation in the north: Nahr El Bared is now quiet but cautious following heavy clashes and shelling last night in the Camp. Camp inhabitants suffer from shortage of food, potable water and electricity and possible problems due to lack of access to health care
In Beddawi Camp, all UNRWA installations (other than schools) are operating normally. Families in the camp are hosting IDPs from Nahr el-Bared. It was reported that one family was hosting 11 others. The conditions are cramped and there is now heavy pressure on the water and sanitation services as well as electricity supply, despite the additional support services brought in by UNRWA and UNICEF.
Situation in CLA: All UNRWA installations operating normally. Teachers living in North Lebanon are not reporting to duty due to the current security situation.
Situation in Beqaa: All UNRWA operations in Beqaa area are functioning normally. Distributions of aids from UNRWA to displaced families started at Beqaa Area.
Situation in Tyre: All installations operating normally. Distribution of aids from UNRWA to displaced families started at Tyre Area and Camps.
Situation in Saida: UNRWA services are operating normally. Students reported to schools today as usual. In total 120 families displaced from Nahr el-Bared camp arrived in Saida.
This entry was posted on Monday, May 28th, 2007 at 2:30 pm and is filed under Situation Updates. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.