Video: Palestinian refugees from Syria speak out

Israel/PalestineMiddle East
on 16 Comments

Possibly what we need to do most in the case of the Syrian revolution is listen to people who participated in it and those who are facing the abhorrent violence against it. Listen to these Palestinians, now yet again refugees in another land. First the Zionist armies exiled them from their villages in Palestine in 1948, now the armies of Bashar exiled them from Syria, which had became a temporary home. This video is 8:31 of a deeply troubling, deeply painful take on the everyday reality of Palestinians made refugees yet again.

About Mosireen

Mosireen is a non-profit media collective in Downtown Cairo born out of the explosion of citizen media and cultural activism in Egypt during the revolution. Armed with mobile phones and cameras, thousands upon thousands of citizens kept the balance of truth in their country by recording events as they happened in front of them, wrong-footing censorship and empowering the voice of a street-level perspective.

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16 Responses

  1. Annie Robbins
    May 2, 2013, 4:26 pm

    300 radical fighters infiltrate Palestinian refugee camp, battling local committees 2012-12-17 01:44:22
    300 fighters from al-Nusra infiltrated Palestinian refugee camp and clashed with local committees.
    • Tens of civilians and members of popular committees have been killed and wounded during clashes.
    • The Lebanese al-Manar TV said the Nusra fighters are bombarding the camp from four axis.

    DAMASCUS, Dec. 16 (Xinhua) — More than 300 fighters from the radical al-Nusra Front on Sunday morning infiltrated the Palestinian camp of in the Syrian capital Damascus and clashed with local committees there, causing human losses, great chaos and huge displacement movement, local media said.

    Al-Nusra, an offshoot of al-Qaida in Iraq, has been beefing up the presence in the surrounding areas of the camp over the past days in a bid to storm it, the local Ajel news network said, adding that intense clashes are going on in the camp.

    The local committees in the camp are controlled by the Palestinian Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine — General Command (PFLP-GC) led by Ahmad Jibril, who is a staunch supporter of the Syrian administration of President Bashar al- Assad.

    Witnesses and sources said that tens of civilians and members of popular committees have been killed and wounded at the Yarmouk camp during the clashes, adding that most of the al-Nusra fighters came from the Damascus’ suburbs of Daraya, Eastern Ghouta, al- Hajar al-Aswad and Yeldah.

    Meanwhile, Anwar Rajja, the PFLP-GC spokesman, denied untrue media reports about defections in the PFLP-GC ranks and about the departure of its leaders from Damascus to the Syrian coastal city of Tartous.

    The Lebanese al-Manar TV, which is close to the Syrian government, said the Nusra fighters are bombarding the camp from four axis.

    Still, no exact number of casualties has emerged.

    Earlier in the day, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a London-based activists’ group, said that a Syrian MIG aircraft bombed parts of the camp, adding that eight people were killed in the process. However, Raja denied the airstrike reports.

    Thrusting the Palestinians in the deadly Syrian crisis adds another complication to the political landscape in Syria which hosts more than 500,000 Palestinian refugees.

    i heard elsewhere large portions of Yarmouk refugee camp have been taken over by al-Nusra. here’s FRANKLIN LAMB april 9th:

    Palestinian refugees are being severely punished in Syria out of revenge by jihadst factions and others, for not becoming involved in the current Syrian civil war ….
    As of yesterday, the situation in Yarmouk stands approximately as follows. The south-west corner of the camp is increasingly under the control of “rebels.” Their control appears to be spreading as reinforcements sneak in and their ranks swell a bit from defections from camp “popular committees.” Sniping and clashes appear to be spreading also. The Ahmed Jabril-led Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command, which was largely expelled two months ago and their weapon stores taken over by Al Nusra fighters, currently has some fighters back in the camp.

    • W.Jones
      May 2, 2013, 4:34 pm

      Thanks for sharing, Annie. The partial expulsion of local Palestinian popular committees in the refugee camps by allegedly Israeli, Turkish, and U.S. funded groups makes me question what is going on?

      If the Palestinian refugees are being expelled by Syria, then to where are they being expelled?

      • Annie Robbins
        May 2, 2013, 4:57 pm

        W.Jones, i would strongly urge you to read the rest of lamb’s report. he emphasizes most of the palestinians do not want to get involved in the conflict. he says 10’s of thousands have been displaced. he says they are ‘fleeing’ as opposed to the allegation of Mosireen, “the armies of Bashar exiled them from Syria” i assume ‘them’ meaning all palestinians, which i question. it’s the first time i have read anything like that. which is different than lamb’s allegation ” The Ahmed Jabril-led Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command, which was largely expelled two months ago”. i presume this is a palestinian refugee militia, in which case their expulsion, if aligned w/nursa, is expected.

        the guy in the video said the zionists and the US were aligned with assad. that seems a little out there.

        this video is taken in cairo, lamb references them:

        In Egypt, Palestinians fleeing Syria have found that the host country is blatantly discriminating against them–a policy left over from the Mubarak era and upheld by the Morsi government. Today, a Palestinian refugee from Syria may only enter Egypt if she or he flys directly from Damascus to Cairo’s airport–an impossible condition given that the Damascus airport is routinely closed. Currently, no passenger airlines are flying out of Damascus airport except sometimes Syria Airline to a few destinations. Any Palestinian refugee arriving from Turkey or Lebanon or anywhere else is detained at the Cairo airport and pressure applied on them until they agree to return to Syria. When Egyptian authorities have forced these refugees onto planes back to Lebanon or Turkey, those authorities refuse entry and force them back to Egypt.

        it’s my understanding the majority of palestinian refugees have not taken up arms against the regime. but one has to question why nursra has embedded themselves inside the refugee camps,which puts them all at risk.

      • Rusty Pipes
        May 2, 2013, 5:03 pm

        Once guerrillas gain a toe-hold in a neighborhood or village, they may use it as a base to launch attacks on government troops (i.e. hiding behind civilians). If the Syrian government starts targeting the insurgents’ positions, many of the residents often flee. Since this has become a pattern through out Syria, civilians who do not want insurgents in their villages either form Popular Committees (to prevent them from coming in) or if the insurgents take the town, take massive flight to avoid the fighting between the government and the insurgents. Some villages have, in the majority, welcomed the insurgents, and have been willing to live with the insurgents’ imposition of order (which includes their variation of the application of sharia).

  2. Annie Robbins
    May 2, 2013, 4:29 pm

    U.S. Sheds Crocodile Tears Over Plight Of Palestinian Refugees
    This is something we never expected to hear from the U.S. State Department. Today it denounced airstrikes against Palestinians.

    Why only now? Why didn’t we hear that during the two war on Gaza? Or during the Israeli attacks in Lebanon?

    Well, this time there were U.S. supported terrorists who where hit by a Syrian Army airstrike while they overran a Palestinian refugee camp near Damascus.

    The United States is deeply concerned by reports that dozens of civilians, including women and children, were killed or wounded in Yarmouk, an area of Damascus home to 150,000 Palestinian refugees, as a result of aerial bombardment and fighting between Syrian government forces and armed opposition on December 16. These latest attacks mark a significant and alarming escalation of the conflict in Syria.

    • Sumud
      May 3, 2013, 4:37 pm

      Today it denounced airstrikes against Palestinians.

      Why only now? Why didn’t we hear that during the two war on Gaza? Or during the Israeli attacks in Lebanon?

      Why not in 1972 re: Israeli air strikes on Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon and Syria after the hostage situation at the Munich Olympics? About 300 men, women and children were killed, and for the first time the US used their Security Council veto power to kill the resolution condemning the Israeli action. It’s been downhill ever since. US Ambassador to UN at the time: George Bush senior.

  3. Rusty Pipes
    May 2, 2013, 4:41 pm

    More like “Insurgent-aligned Palestinian Refugees from Syria speak out.” Even though there were many secular activists involved in the beginning months of nonviolent protests (when the demands were for reform), once militant factions highjacked the movement (demanding nothing short of Assad’s ouster), the opposition has been overwhelmingly Islamist (Muslim Brotherhood and Al Qaeda) and armed.

    Speaking of the Yarmouk Refugee Camp in Damascus, the Angry Arab notes that “Palestinian leaders and organizations in Syria (who are opposed to the Syrian regime) mildly and politely ask the Free Syrian Army to end its crimes in the camp”

  4. HarryLaw
    May 2, 2013, 5:02 pm

    Al Nusra front will kill anyone who gets in the way of a Sharia non democratic state, if they came to power Hezbollah would be next on the list, these people are throat cutting fanatics backed by the Saudis and Gulf states and are eager to forment sectarian civil war in the region, fortunately the more secular Sunni and other minority sects in Syria will defeat them, as the Sunni tribes have done in Iraq. The leader of the Islamic State of Iraq, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, said his group had trained and funded fighters from Syria’s al-Nusra Front – which is blacklisted by the United States – since the early days of the two-year-old uprising.
    He said in a statement posted on Islamist websites and seen by Reuters on Tuesday that the two groups would operate under the joint title of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.
    “It’s now time to declare in front of the people of the Levant and the world that al-Nusra Front is but an extension of the Islamic State of Iraq and part of it,” Baghdadi said.
    “We thus declare … the cancellation of the name of the Islamic State of Iraq and the name of al-Nusra Front and grouping them together under one name, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant,”.

  5. W.Jones
    May 2, 2013, 5:36 pm

    Recently, one of the anti-Syrian fundamentalist groups kidnapped Christian religious leaders in Syria. There is a petition for our government to seek their release.

  6. Rusty Pipes
    May 2, 2013, 6:01 pm

    As I reflect on the tens of millions of dollars the State Department has acknowledged spending for activist groups in Syria on communications equipment and media training, I am reminded of the Morsi government’s early clamp-down on Western democracy-promoting NGOs — like the State Department-linked NED. I lost track of how that story developed. Has Egypt’s MB changed its mind about the NED’s color-revolution, media tactics?

  7. Walid
    May 3, 2013, 12:05 am

    Mosireen is supposed to be about the Egyptian people’s revolution and its aftermath; what is doing pushing this anti-Assad video of a couple of Palestinians demonstrating in Cairo?

    • Annie Robbins
      May 3, 2013, 1:11 am

      good question walid. the first thing i did was google their name and USAID. just out of curiosity of course.

      • Walid
        May 3, 2013, 1:56 am

        It’s about the MB, their influence on Egyptian politics and most probably this Mosireen group and the MB movement everywhere working to overthrow Assad. The Palestinians in the Syrian camps had been refusing to go along with this as they were relatively better treated than in neighbouring countries’ camps but after Hamas quit on Assad and moved its offices out of Damascus and into MB stronghold Doha, there are more and more anti-Assad demonstrations by Palestinians. When the insurgency started in Syria, Gazans were demonstrating in favour of Assad; now they are demonstrating against him.

  8. Mike_Konrad
    May 3, 2013, 3:25 am

    Mosireen is supposed to be about the Egyptian people’s revolution and its aftermath; what is doing pushing this anti-Assad video of a couple of Palestinians demonstrating in Cairo?

    Even though the Palestinians are Sunni, I doubt most Palestinians would go up against the Assads, who run a secular regime, and have given the Palestinians in Syria a lot of rights that they do not get elsewhere in the Arab world.

    Any Palestinian who fights for the Salafists has to be nutty. I am sure there are a few, but not typical.

    The war in Syria makes no sense to me. Assad is a real dictator, but in the Mideast, he is an enlightened despot, though a brutal despot he is.

    • Walid
      May 3, 2013, 3:08 pm

      Mike, forget everything that was told to you about Muslims and start fresh by learning a few basics about them from a reliable source.

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