GENEVA (Reuters) - The number of Syrian refugees in four neighboring countries has jumped by 40 percent in recent weeks and now stands at about 55,000, almost half of whom are under 18 years old, according to U.N. figures.
But the total is likely to grow because there are estimated to be at least 20,000 refugees who have not yet registered, as well as 200,000 or more Syrians who are displaced within their own country. Following are country by country snapshots:
As of April 8, there were 24,564 Syrian refugees registered. On April 5 alone, more than 2,800 crossed over from the Syrian region of Idlib.
Most of the refugees are housed in camps in Turkey’s southern provinces of Hatay and Gaziantep, but the government has moved 9,000 to a container city in Kilis province. After an unexpected surge in refugee numbers in early April, 905 refugees were settled at a new site in Sanliurfa province.
Turkey is considering setting up a “security” or “buffer” zone along its border with Syria, Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said on March 16.
Syrian forces have laid mines near the frontiers of Lebanon and Turkey along routes used to escape the conflict, advocacy group Human Rights Watch has said.
On Monday, Turkey said two officials working in a refugee camp near the border were among five people wounded by gunfire coming from Syria as troops clashed with rebels nearby.
Under an $84 million U.N. appeal launched last month to support refugees for six months, 50,000 would be covered in Turkey, with a contingency plan for 100,000.
There were over 20,000 Syrian refugees as of April 8. The U.N. has registered 10,112 and said there were a further 7,500 in the Bekaa Valley and 2,000-3,000 in the Tripoli area. There are also 704 Syrian refugees in south Beirut.
More than 80 percent of those registered are from Homs, epicenter of the 13-month-old uprising against President Bashar al-Assad, according to U.N. refugee agency data from March 22.
The U.N. appeal is based on a plan for 25,000 refugees in Lebanon in the next six months, with a contingency plan for 50,000.
Some 7,021 Syrians had been registered by April 4. About 2,000 are awaiting registration. About one-third of those registered come from Homs and another third from Deraa.
The Jordanian Hashemite Charity Organization estimates there may be about 20,000 Syrians who have fled into Jordan but have not yet asked for assistance or protection.
The U.N. appeal is based on a plan for 20,000 refugees in Jordan in the next six months, with a contingency plan for 50,000.
The U.N. registered 792 Syrian refugees by April 4 and estimated 400 were awaiting registration in a mosque at Dohuk. The refugees are mainly Syrians of Kurdish origin who crossed into Dohuk in the Kurdish-administered part of Iraq.
The U.N. humanitarian appeal is based on a plan for 1,500 refugees in Iraq in the next six months, with a contingency plan for 5,000.
The Syrian Arab Red Crescent Society estimates the number of internally displaced people in Syria at 200,000, which was the figure being used by U.N. agencies, UNHCR regional coordinator Panos Moumtzis said on March 13. “There are some indications it is much larger than that,” he said.
There are 110,000 refugees within Syria, not including refugees from the Palestinian territories. Of the 110,000, all but 8,000 are from Iraq. Some 67,000 Iraqis have returned to Iraq in the past year.
The U.N. refugee agency UNHCR has set up a website with the information on Syrian refugees here
Reporting by Tom Miles; Editing by Stephanie Nebehay