Life for Syrian refugees in Turkey

Five mobile homes in the province of Malatya are allocated for Syrian women to make traditional thin lavash bread on metal sheets.

Five mobile homes in the province of Malatya are allocated for Syrian women to make traditional thin lavash bread on metal sheets.

MALATYA - Beydagi mobile home city in the village of Fatih in the central Turkish province of Malatya has been home for over seven thousand Syrian refugees for the last six months.

It is just one of 22 camps across Turkey`s southeastern provinces including Gaziantep, Hatay and Malatya which are sheltering just under a third - 215 thousand - of the total Syrian refugees in Turkey.

Syrian women in the camp were previously making their bread and lavash - thin bread - on electric stoves in the city, but now they can use cooking pans to bake bread in the traditional way they are used to, thanks to the five mobile homes put at their disposal to meet their daily need for bread. There are a total of two thousand mobile homes in the camp.

The bread making homes are equipped with 30 metal sheets and pastry boards and are available each day from early in the morning till late at night.

Speaking to Anadolu Agency, Syrian refugee Zahirah al-Ahmad, 50, said she came to Turkey with her family from Homs, one of Syria`s hardest hit cities by the bloody civil war.

Zahirah stressed that she and her family feel "special" for being hosted by Turkey while her fellow citizens are trapped in the beseiged Syrian city, starving to death.

Her 25-year-old daughter Yasmin al-Ahmad said she was pleased by the atmosphere and opportunities provided in the container city but is praying for the conflict in Syria to end so she can return to her home country.

The Syrian civil war, which will reach its third-year mark in March, has resulted in the deaths of over 130,000 people and displaced 6.5 million people internally, according to UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Over two million are now registered as refugees in the neighboring countries of Turkey, Lebanon and Iraq. According to recent data from Turkish Prime Ministry Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD), the number of Syrian refugees in Turkey has exceeded 714,000. 70% of the refugees are women and children.

The Beydagi accommodation site was built in Fatih village of Malatya province by AFAD Presidency, and began receiving Syrian refugees as of 12 June 2013.

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