EU official visits Palestinian, Iraqi refugees

The European Union's top development aid official toured a Palestinian refugee camp and visited with Iraqi refugees in Syria on Saturday as part of a regional tour to assess the humanitarian situation of refugees in the Middle East. EU Development Commissioner Louis Michel visited the Khan Dannoun Palestinian refugee camp, around 40 kilometers (25 miles) south of Damascus and clinics for Iraqi refugees in Jaramana on the outskirts of the capital. Scores of Iraqis who fled the violence in neighboring Iraq, most of them Christian, now live in Jaramana. Michel is scheduled to meet President Bashar Assad and other Syrian officials on Sunday. Syria currently hosts around 500,000 Palestinian refugees and an estimated 1.5 million Iraqi citizens who fled their country since the overthrow of Saddam Hussein's regime in 2003.