Winter onset latest challenge for Syrian civilians
TEL RIFAAT, Syria – The days are still warm across the fertile plains of northern Syria around Aleppo, but night brings a chill – an ominous harbinger of winter's approach and the deepening of the already severe humanitarian crisis gripping a country wracked by civil war.
Warm temperatures and plentiful food have cushioned the blow somewhat for hundreds of thousands of Syrians displaced from their homes or living in refugee camps across the border. But the arrival of near-freezing temperatures could mean greater suffering and even deaths from exposure, as international aid agencies scramble to cope.
Among the first things to go will be the practice of sleeping outside to avoid the artillery and airstrikes that rain down late night death on homes.
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