Amman: Nearly 9,000 Syrian refugees staying in Jordan left the kingdom for home this month, bringing the number of returnees to more than 68,000 in the past two years, a government official said Tuesday.
“Some 8,974 Syrian refugees voluntarily returned to their country in June, mostly from the northern refugee camp of Zaatari,” Anmar Hmud, the government spokesman for Syrian refugee affairs, said.
“This brings the total number of those who returned in the past two years to 68,373 people.”
But Hmud said refugees are still streaming across the border to Jordan.
“More refugees continue to flee to Jordan. Around 12,200 Syrians sought refuge in Jordan this month,” he added.
Jordan says it is hosting more than 540,000 Syrian refugees, 150,000 of whom are housed in Zaatari camp, near the border with Syria.
In April, the UN refugee agency UNHCR reported that more Syrians were opting to return home from Jordan for a number of reasons, including reports of improved security in a number of border villages, and to protect their property.
Some were also returning to reunite with family members or fetch left-behind relatives and bring them to Jordan.
Over 1.6 million Syrian refugees have sought refuge in Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey since the beginning of an uprising against President Bashar Al Assad in March 2011, the UN says.