Russian Defence Ministry representative Yury Tarasov slammed the United Stated for being responsible of the “horrifying” conditions in the Rukban refugee camp in southern Syria on the border with Jordan. He was speaking via video link at the Meeting of the Interdepartmental Coordination Unit on the return of refugees to Syria in Moscow on Friday.
Tarasov said the camp’s residents, some 50,000 people, suffer from constant lack of food and water and have no access to healthcare.
“There are cases of severe abuse as the refugees have no money [to pay for food.] The help of international organisations almost completely goes to the militants’ hands and does not radically improve the situation,” he added.
Tarasov also said the camp’s administrators are unable to provide security for the refugees.
“On Rukban’s territory, theft, prostitution and forced marriages are frequent. Sexual exploitation of minors and gender inequality are widely practiced. Marriages, births and deaths are not registered. Many temporarily displaced people in the camp do not have documents at their disposal,” he said.
“The full responsibility for creating chaos in Rukban lays upon the USA which occupied this region illegally and used humanitarian problems in the refugee camp to legitimize their military presence in the south of Syria,” the MoD official said.
On Thursday, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova said the fact that Syrian Red Crescent representatives have not been allowed into the Rukban refugee camp show that the Americans have “something to hide.”
Ruptly has requested a comment from US Central Command, however, no reply has so far been received.
Video credit: Ruptly