Over 500,000 Syrians return to their country: Türkiye

Over 500,000 Syrians return to their country: Türkiye

Construction of houses continue at 259 different locations in northern Syria, says Turkish interior minister

By Ahmet Sertan Usul

ANKARA (AA) - Number of Syrians that returned their country since 2016 has exceeded 500,000, Turkish interior minister said on Wednesday.

Following Türkiye's anti-terror operations across its border in northern Syria, the establishment of safe areas and sustainable public services, especially education and health, have made it possible for Syrians to return.

Since 2016, Ankara has launched a trio of successful anti-terror operations across its border in northern Syria to prevent the formation of a terror corridor and enable the peaceful settlement of residents: Euphrates Shield (2016), Olive Branch (2018), and Peace Spring (2019).

Speaking at an event on the occasion of Türkiye's projects to build houses in Idlib, Suleyman Soylu noted that 503,350 Syrians have returned to their country since Operation Euphrates Shield.

Saying that the house projects continue at 259 different locations in northern Syria, he stated that so far construction of nearly 60,000 houses have been completed.

Syria has been embroiled in a civil war since early 2011 when the Bashar al-Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with unexpected brutality.

According to the official numbers of the UN, over 350,000 people have lost their lives to the conflict but human rights groups estimate the death toll to be between 500,000-600,000.

Over 14 million had to flee their homes, becoming refugees or internally displaced, according to the EU.

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