Syrian government prevents Syrian refugees on Lebanese border from entering Syria
Turkey - SMART
The Syrian government forces prevented more than 60 Syrian refugees, including women and children, from entering Syria through the Lebanese border, using gunfire to force them to return to Lebanon.
Local sources reported to SMART that the management of the Jdeidat Yabous crossing between Syria and Lebanon, prevented the refugees from entering Syria as a precautionary procedure to prevent the transmission of COVID-19.
On social media, activists posted a video of one of the refugees on the border saying that Syrian government forces directly targeted them with gunfire after the refugees asked them for drinking water. The Syrian government forces exploited the refugees, demanding amounts of money in order to allow their entry to Syria, according to the refugee in the video.
On Mar. 23, 2020, the Syrian government Interior Ministry announced closing the Kassab border crossing with Turkey and all crossings with Lebanon, except for cargo trucks, as a precautionary procedure to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
On Friday, the Syrian government Health Ministry registered five new cases of COVID-19, raising the total number to 38 cases.
On Dec. 31, 2019, the novel coronavirus COVID-19 spread in the Chinese city of Wuhan. The virus has infected more than 2.2 million people until April 18, 2020 in more than 210 countries, more than 150,000 of them died, and more than 563 thousand of them recovered, according to the (Worldometer).
COVID-19 is an infectious disease, caused by SARS-CoV-2, that spreads from person-to-person and by respiratory droplets. These droplets fall on surrounding surfaces, so other people could be infected when they touch these surfaces by touching their eyes, noses, or mouths. People could be infected if they inhale droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes, so it is important to keep a one-meter distance (three feet) away from infected people.
Infection symptoms include body aches, blocked nose, sore throat, cough, and fever. The symptoms begin as mild and develop gradually. Some people become infected without showing any symptoms and without feeling ill. About 80% of infected people recover from the disease without any special treatment.