Syrian-Turkish border refugees suffer through cold

Extreme cold and coronavirus are a daily battle for Syrian refugees living on the Syrian-Turkish border, with snow covering their tents and cases of infection on the rise in the camp.

Anas Khalil has been sheltering with his wife and three children.

He fled the fighting three years ago hoping to find safety, but instead found himself face-to-face with the dangers of harsh winters.

"This storm started two weeks ago in the camp. Water is seeping from the tents and there is humidity that harms the children. Adding to all this the coronavirus, my brother, sister and mother were infected. I isolated them in a tent. We have three tents and isolated them in one of them."

The unforgiving winter has set in, as children walk the muddy streets barefoot, after heavy rainfall damaged several tents in the camp.

That’s left families huddled together for warmth and shelter, but exposing them to infection as a consequence.

Fouad Ghazi Al-Ahmad says they need help.

"Where can we hide from the winter? Where can we hide from the coronavirus? There are infections here and tents do not isolate. Also a flood took place. Our situation is miserable in the camp. We ask god to help us and donors to help us in the camps. Our conditions are really hard."

Syrian relief and rescue agency the White Helmets said on its Twitter account that severe weather has affected more than 200 camps in the north, putting the lives of refugees, children and elderly people in danger.

Video Transcript

- Extreme cold and coronavirus are a daily battle for Syrian refugees living on the Syrian-Turkish border, with snow covering their tents and cases of infection on the rise in the camp. Anas Khalil has been sheltering with his wife and three children. He fled the fighting three years ago hoping to find safety, but instead found himself face to face with the dangers of harsh winters.

ANAS KHALIL: [SPEAKING ARABIC]

INTERPRETER: This storm started two weeks ago in the camp. Water is seeping from the tents and the humidity harms the children. Adding to all this is coronavirus, my brother, sister, and mother were infected. I isolated them in a tent. We have three tents, and isolated them in one of them.

- The unforgiving winter has set in, as children walk the muddy streets barefoot after heavy rainfall damaged several tents in the camp. That's left families huddled together for warmth and shelter, but exposing them to infection as a consequence. Fouad Ghazi Al-Ahmad says they need help.

FOUAD GHAZI AL-AHMAD: [SPEAKING ARABIC]

INTERPRETER: Where can we hide from the winter? Where can we hide from the coronavirus? There are infections here and tents do not isolate. Also a flood took place.

Our situation is miserable in the camp. We ask God to help us and donors to help us in the camp. Our conditions are really hard.

- Syrian relief and rescue agency, the White Helmets, said on its Twitter account that severe weather has affected more than 200 camps in the north, putting the lives of refugees, children, and the elderly in danger.