The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry is considering the possibility of returning eight families from Syria to Ukraine in connection with a new outbreak of violence in the country, Acting Director of the Foreign Ministry's Information Policy Department Yevhen Perebyinis has told Ukrinform.
"There were several stages of the evacuation of Ukrainians from Syria, and the last one was conducted last December. At that time there were no those wanting to leave the territory of the Arab state. However, eight new families, about 24 people, have recently expressed their desire to return to Ukraine. The possibility of returning Ukrainians home, including in cooperation with foreign partners, is currently being considered," he said. The press service of the Foreign Ministry said that 518 Ukrainians had been evacuated from Syria since the beginning of the armed conflict in the country. Of these, 379 returned home through the efforts of the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry and other government agencies involved. Another 139 were evacuated from the Arab state with the assistance of the International Organization for Migration. As reported, the armed conflict, which took the form of civil and guerrilla warfare, has continued in Syria since March 2011. The country's authorities claim that they are conducting an anti-terrorist operation against the terrorists and mercenaries, who are supported from abroad. According to UN estimates, more than 60,000 people were killed in Syria from March 15, 2011 until the end of 2012.