United Nations: The UN relief office Monday said that more than 3,000 families have been displaced around the coastal city of Latakia in Syria.
"The Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has received reports over the past two days that indicate that more than 3,000 families have been displaced from around 30 villages around Latakia city in Syria," deputy UN spokesperson Eduardo del Buey told reporters here, Xinhua reported.
The Syrian government has opened three shelters, but reports indicate that 80 percent of the displaced people are staying with relatives and host communities inside Latakia city, according to the deputy spokesperson.
"UN agencies and humanitarian partners are working with the Syrian Arab Red Crescent to provide aid," he said.
Clashes between Syrian military and armed rebels took place last week as the rebels in large numbers attacked three villages in the countryside of Syria`s coastal province of Latakia.
The conflict, which killed dozens of people, came as the rebels have seemingly opted to open new fronts to confuse the Syrian army whose troops are stretched on battles across the country.
Latakia province, the home province of President Bashar al-Assad, has a special importance as it houses towns and villages inhabited by the Alawite minority, an offshoot of Shiite Islam to whom the ruling elite in Syria belongs.