Hundreds of families are reported missing as around 28,000 people have fled the Islamic State-captured towns of Mahin and Hawarin in the eastern countryside of Homs amid the daily barrage of Syrian and Russian air strikes.
Most displaced residents have headed in the direction of the desert while others travelled to the village of Al-Qaryatin and the country’s north, according to activist Kaddor Ben Mahin.
The activist added that the actual number of missing people remains unknown as no means of communication has been established with the displaced. Ben Mahin confirmed that most people had settled in the towns of Khnefis, Sawwanah , Sokhna, Raqqa, Mansoora, Albab, Kafernaha, and Dana.
At least 200,000 people have been displaced and more than 700 people have been killed due to the Russia air strikes that began in September 30 in Aleppo, Hama and Homs, and Idleb, according to monitoring groups.
Ben Mahin reported that many of the displaced are spread over the desert with no available means of transportation, suffering from hunger, cold temperatures, extreme fatigue and fear of bombardment after being targeted by regime barrel bombs, rocket launchers and artillery in the town of Sadad.
Activists from the towns of Mahin and Hawarin had run expeditions financed by foreigners to look for missing people, Ben Mahin said, but added the search was difficult because of the large distances to cover, a lack of transportation and high cost of car rental, exceeding 250,000 Syrian pounds for a car.
At least 22 people from Mahin, six from Hawarin and three others from Al Qaryatin village were killed, as well as dozens wounded, when a rocket fell on a group queuing in front of a bakery. Warplanes on Monday also raided Al Souraneh village, killing four children and wounding dozens more.
This article was edited by The Syrian Observer. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.