Syrian refugees hid at the temple site and said, “It is more comfortable than the makeshift refugee camps.
The ancient Roman ruins in northwestern Syria are now home to many refugees displaced by the civil war. Agence France-Presse reported on the 10th that the Syrian civil war lasted nine years, causing more than 380,000 deaths and millions of people displaced.
There are 40 UNESCO World Heritage villages in northwestern Syria. These villages were built from the first to the seventh century AD. Today, only a few temples and churches remain. There are dozens of displaced people living near the site of the temple of Zeus alone.
Hassan, a middle-aged man who lives on the site, said that living here is much more comfortable than temporary refugee camps because it is not crowded and there is no need to worry about contracting infectious diseases such as Coronavirus pandemic.
Local officials asked these displaced people to move away from the historical sites, but they refused. Now that the local area is about to enter a rainy winter, these people are even more reluctant to move out without suitable accommodation.
Hasan said that living on the site also has some inconveniences, mainly because it is far from the school in the village and it is not convenient for children to go to school. In addition, there are many venomous snakes and insects around, posing a safety threat to family members.