In the sixth year of the civil war, Syrians have now finally started returning home en masse to conflict-free areas while new figures show more than 224,000 Syrians were born in Turkey since the war that forced millions to take shelter in Turkey began.
Returning home remains a dim prospect for about 3 million Syrian refugees who have taken shelter in Turkey since the civil war broke out in Syria. However, hope has flourished in the past two years for a return, and a Turkish-backed operation by opposition forces further increased returns that now amount to about 50,000 expatriates. For those now calling Turkey home, figures show the number of babies born to displaced Syrian families has reached 224,750 in six years. Since January 2015, about 50,000 Syrians have returned to their country from Turkey. Returns significantly increased especially after Operation Euphrates Shield that was held last year.
Rebels of the Free Syrian Army backed by the Turkish army had managed to wrestle back control of several towns from the terrorist group Daesh in areas close to the Turkish border. Rebuilding is in process in these towns, while daily life has more or less returned to normal, encouraging more Syrians to start over a new life at home. The Öncüpınar border crossing in Turkish province of Kilis is busy with crowds returning home every day. Boarding packed buses, Syrians are escorted to towns liberated from Daesh by rebels.
Muhammad Najjar had to flee Syria with his wife and children two years ago. He was among 100 people waiting at the border crossing on Wednesday to register for returns as Turkish customs officials checked his papers. Najjar told Anadolu Agency (AA) that he was happy to be reuniting with his relatives in Syria and said it was thanks to Turkey’s support against terrorists in Syria that this was possible.