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PLO delegation to hold talks with Syria on Yarmouk relief

By AFP - Apr 06,2015 - Last updated at Apr 06,2015

RAMALLAH — A Palestinian official said Monday a delegation was heading to Damascus for talks on helping residents inside the Yarmouk refugee camp, parts of which have been overrun by Daesh terror group.

Hundreds of families have been evacuated from the camp in a southern neighbourhood of Damascus after Daesh jihadists launched on attack on Wednesday.

Palestinian forces inside Yarmouk are largely surrounded by Daesh fighters who have captured large parts of the camp.

Ahmed Majdalani, an official with the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), told AFP that the delegation would focus its efforts on providing security and assistance to the camp.

"We will discuss with a number of Syrian officials securing the relief corridor opened yesterday to deliver humanitarian aid and getting civilians out so they won't become human shields for the terrorist Daesh group," he said.

The delegation will also hold meetings with various Palestinian factions to discuss how to counter Daesh threats, said Majdalani, who is heading the group.

Majdalani accused Daesh militants of "seeking to control the whole camp" and to use it "as a springboard for attacks on the Syrian capital Damascus because of its strategic location".

He said the visit comes after talks with officials in several Arab countries.

"We have an Arab and international plan to stop the violence perpetrated against our people," Majdalani said.

In a statement, the PLO called for "all sides to immediately agree to protect the camp from efforts to turn it into a battlefield".

It also called for civilians to have access to relief corridors and to humanitarian and medical assistance.

Since the jihadist advance began, regime forces have pounded the camp with shells and barrel bombs, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based monitoring group.

Dozens of Hamas and Islamic Jihad supporters meanwhile protested in Gaza on Monday to demand an end to the violence in Yarmouk.

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