*** Yelda surrendered to the Syrian government at the end of April 2018 along with neighboring Beit Sahm and Babbila. Thousands of fighters and civilians alike were forcibly transferred to northern Syria in early May under the terms of the deal. Yelda was subsequently reclassified from a Tier 3 besieged area to the Siege Watch Watchlist. More details in the forthcoming Siege Watch Tenth Quarterly Report - Part 2, which will be published in late summer 2018. ***
Dates: Besieged since mid-2013
Siege classification: Tier 3
Besieged by: Syrian govt.
UN recognizes siege?: No
Active Truce?: Yes, since February 2014
Current population: 16,500 (as of 6/31/16)
Civil control: Yelda Local Council
Military control: FSA-affiliated groups, Jaysh al-Ababil, Sham al-Rasul, Aknaf Beit al-Maqdis, Ahrar al-Sham, and Jaysh al-Islam
Siege-related deaths: Data unavailable
Aid: Previously received some UNRWA shipments intended for displaced Yarmouk residents and other Palestinians. Last shipment was in May 2016, since then UNRWA has not delivered due to the security situation.
Active conflict: Pro-government attacks stopped after the truce, but there is occasional spillover fighting between ISIS and Hayat Tahrir al-Sham.
Additional Details:During the November 2016-January 2017 period, the Syrian government tried twice to negotiate forcible surrenders with four southern suburbs neighborhoods, including Yelda, but did not follow through on threats. Limited civilian movement across checkpoints, stable humanitarian situation. The area contains many displaced from Yarmouk and Hajar al-Aswad.