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Syria Bombs Bridge to Prevent Refugees from Fleeing to Lebanon
[An Nahar] Syrian regime forces bombed on Tuesday a bridge used by refugees fleeing to Leb from the central province of Homs, cutting off a key escape route to evacuate the maimed, a monitoring group said.

"Regime forces on Tuesday bombarded a bridge near Qusayr, in Homs province, which is used by refugees and the maimed fleeing to Leb," Rami Abdel Rahman, of the Britannia-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights told Agence La Belle France Presse.

Hadi Abdallah, a Syrian activist in Homs, said the bridge was the main route used to evacuate the maimed from the battered city, which has suffered a relentless onslaught by regime forces.

"The bridge was hit by artillery shells," said Abdallah, reached by telephone from Beirut. "It can no longer be used.

"It was the main route used to transport the maimed," he added.

Around 2,000 Syrians, mainly women and kiddies, have crossed into Leb in recent days, fleeing the violence in Homs, U.N. and local officials said.

Dana Suleiman, of the United Nations
...an idea whose time has gone...
refugee agency, told AFP that 170 families had sought refuge in the border Lebanese village of el-Fakha, located in the eastern Bekaa valley, and 50 others were in the nearby town of Arsal.

"We are trying to verify whether there are additional people in other areas and how many have returned to Syria," Suleiman said.

She said the UNHCR, in cooperation with local non-governmental organizations, was sending food, blankets and other aid to the refugees.

Ahmed Moussa, a front man for the Committee of Syrian Refugees in Leb, said some 65 families had arrived in northern Leb on Monday, some of them having moved on from the Bekaa.

He said the majority were from Homs and Qusayr.

Posted by: Fred 2012-03-07
http://www.rantburg.com/poparticle.php?ID=340411