Jordan police deny clashes killed Syrian refugee

Residents in Jordan’s sprawling Zaatari camp said one Syrian refugee woman was killed in clashes with police

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Jordanian authorities dismissed claims by residents in the sprawling Zaatari camp that one Syrian refugee woman was killed in clashes with security forces, agencies reported Saturday.

“A woman was killed in the clashes,” an eyewitness told Agence France-Presse without elaborating.

But a police spokesman denied the claim, insisting that “nobody was killed.”

Jordan’s Public Security Directorate said in a statement that “dozens of Syrian refugees at the Zaatari refugee camp rioted after police detained a group of refugees after leaving the camp illegally.”

It added: “Twenty-two policemen were injured in the clashes. The rioters burned six tents and two caravans and tried to attack police stations.

Security officials said the clashes injured three refugees in the sprawling camp close to Syria’s border, which is home to more than 100,000 Syrian refugees.

Meanwhile, the residents were reported by Reuters as saying that scores of inhabitants of sprawling camp close to the Syrian border were injured as baton-wielding anti-riot police used tear gas to disperse stone-throwing refugees.

Running over Syrian child

Residents said the rioting, the first such serious disturbance this year, was provoked when a Jordanian security officer ran over with his car and seriously injured a 4-year-old Syrian child, prompting outrage by residents and relatives protesting ill treatment.

The camp witnessed almost daily protests over living conditions when it was first set up nearly two years ago but protests have since dwindled as U.N. agencies stepped up improvements in its infrastructure and services.

The United Nations says 2.5 million Syria refugees have registered in total, more than 10 percent of Syria’s population.

Jordan hosts at least 600,000 refugees with the rest mainly in Lebanon and Turkey.

(With AFP and Reuters)