The Latest: UN says no deal with Jordan on stranded Syrians

AP News
Posted: Sep 02, 2016 10:30 AM
The Latest: UN says no deal with Jordan on stranded Syrians

MOADAMIYEH, Syria (AP) — The Latest on Syria's conflict (all times local):

5:30 p.m.

The U.N.'s top humanitarian affairs official says he was unable to reach agreement with Jordan on delivering aid to more than 70,000 Syrians stranded on the kingdom's desert border.

Stephen O'Brien said after a border trip on Friday that 75 percent of those stranded are women and children with a "very real need" for food, water and shelter.

Jordan sealed the border in June, halting regular aid delivery from its territory, after an attack by Islamic State extremists. Jordan says aid groups must find another way to reach the displaced.

O'Brien says talks with Jordan will continue but that forcing the displaced to move is not an option. He says that "if there was an immediate solution, you can be absolutely assured I would be grabbing it with both hands."


4:00 p.m.

A Kurdish official in Syria says Turkish forces have opened fire and lobbed tear gas across the border to break up a protest by Kobani locals against a barrier wall being built by Turkey, killing one teenager.

A provincial Turkish official says security forces fired tear gas and a water cannon at some 400 protesters on the Syrian side of the border Friday, after they threw rocks at builders of the new wall. He spoke on condition of anonymity in line with regulations.

Turkey has been building a wall along its border with Syria since 2014.

The construction of the wall at Kobani began after Ankara sent tanks and warplanes into Syria to push advancing Kurdish fighters, as well as Islamic State group militants, from its borders.

Delkhwaz Khalil, a Kurdish official in Kobani, says a 17-year old died and 80 people were wounded.


11:20 a.m.

Dozens of Syrians living in a besieged rebel-held suburb of the capital, Damascus, have begun evacuating the area following a deal struck with the government that grants amnesty to gunmen and restores state control.

An Associated Press reporter in Moadamiyeh says security forces searched the luggage of dozens of men, women, and children before they boarded buses Friday, heading out of the suburb to shelters in a government-controlled neighborhood nearby.

Moadamiyeh, which a U.N. report said was gassed with toxic sarin in 2013, has suffered a three-year government siege.

About 300 people are leaving Moadamiyeh, which has an estimated population of 28,000, under the first part of the deal's implementation. It follows closely after the full evacuation of the nearby rebel-held suburb Daraya, which was widely criticized as a forced displacement.

—Albert Aji in Moadamiyeh, Syria


10:20 a.m.

Turkey's president denies claims by U.S. officials that Syrian Kurdish rebels fighting Turkish forces in northern Syria have withdrawn east of the Euphrates River.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Friday as he departed for the G20 meeting in China, "they tell us that YPG (a Syrian Kurdish force) has crossed east of the Euphrates. And we say: no they did not."

Erdogan is apparently referring to U.S. officials saying earlier this week that the Kurds have mostly moved to the east of the river, as demanded by Turkey.

Last week, Turkey sent troops across the border to help Syrian rebels capture the town of Jarablus. But then clashes broke out with the Kurds. Turkey does not want the rebels it considers terrorists to form a corridor on its border.