https://diyaruna.com/en_GB/articles/cnmi_di/features/2019/11/06/feature-02

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Heavy rain worsens conditions at IDP camps in rural Idlib

By Waleed Abu al-Khair in Cairo

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Dozens of families at the Kafr Hum IDP camp in rural Idlib have lost their tents after heavy rainfall flooded the camp. [Photo courtesy of Idlib Plus Facebook page]

The start of winter has exacerbated the poor living conditions of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in rural Idlib, as they are left to fend for themselves in the absence of humanitarian organisations, a local activist told Diyaruna Wednesday (November 6th).

IDPs are suffering from flooding that hit their camps and swept away their tents and modest possessions, Idlib activist Musab Assaf told Diyaruna.

Kafr Hum camp in northern rural Idlib was the hardest hit, with dozens of families becoming homeless after their tents were flooded with rainwater, he said, noting that camp residents had stepped in to host these families.

"A real catastrophe will befall the camp if it remains without assistance as rainwater has flooded makeshift sewer holes dug by the camp’s residents," he said, which poses the risk of the spread of diseases and epidemics.

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A child tries to cross from one tent to another at the Kafr Hum camp, where flooded sewage water poses a major health risk to residents. [Photo courtesy of Idlib Plus Facebook page]

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A demonstration was held on November 2nd in Idlib against the Tahrir al-Sham-controlled 'salvation government', to protest the lack of basic services in the area. [Photo courtesy of Idlib Plus Facebook page]

IDP camps in rural Idlib host hundreds of families who have fled hot spots or areas entered by regime forces, said Assaf, noting that there is not a single humanitarian or relief organisation still operating in the area.

Moreover, neither Tahrir al-Sham, which controls the area, nor the so-called "salvation government", an administrative entity controlled by Tahrir al-Sham, "have lifted a finger to aid the stricken camps".

The lack of basic services drove dozens of residents of the city of Idlib and its rural areas to hold a demonstration on Saturday (November 2nd) in which they raised banners blasting the salvation government for its failure to provide even minimal assistance to civilians.

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