Syria

UN Struggling to Cope with Syrian Refugees

Number has topped 700,000

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The United Nations has said that it was struggling to cope with an "unrelenting flow" of families fleeing violence in Syria, as the number of documented refugees topped 700,000.

Sybella Wilkes, a spokeswoman for the UN's refugee agency UNHCR, said that the number of families seeking refugee across the border had risen "dramatically", with more than 3,000 crossing into Jordan on Monday alone. Some 712,000 refugees had registered with the UNHCR or were awaiting registration, though true figures are likely to be much higher as many are wary of making themselves known to authorities. 

Atrocities like the discovery of dozens of bodies in an Aleppo canal who appeared to have been summarily executed, underline the horror they are escaping. An upsurge of violence in Deraa has led entire villages to pack up and leave, according to officials in Jordan, where a new refugee camp is being hastily constructed after 21,000 people arrived in the last week alone.