Damascus: Amidst heavy firing and gunshots, several in the embattled Syrian city of Aleppo have escaped but many are trapped as they find it “dangerous” to flee the city, said a UN official on Tuesday.
Thousands in Aleppo have been compelled to seek refuge in schools, mosques and public buildings, but there are others who haven`t fled the city as they haven`t had the means, said Melissa Fleming, spokeswoman for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
“Many feel it is too dangerous to make that journey and we are getting indications that the journey is fraught with armed gangs and road blocks blocking the way," she said.
Aleppo, a city inhabited by 2.5 millions, has been mired in a severe conflict for a week now, and UN figures suggest a total of 15,000 to 18,000 have been displaced.
The fighting between the Syrian government forces and rebels entered its the fourth day today. Syrian government forces bombarded the city with heavy shelling and military helicopters attacks on the key rebel positions.
About 7,000 have taken refuge in university dormitories and many more are camped out in 32 schools, each housing 250-350 people, Fleming told a news conference.
U.N. humanitarian chief Valerie Amos said on Sunday about 200,000 people had fled Aleppo and surrounding areas over the weekend, citing an estimate from the Syrian Arab Red Crescent.
With Agency Inputs