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Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas. — Photo by AFP

RAMALLAH: The Palestinian president said he was ready to take in Palestinian refugees fleeing Syria's civil war.    

Mahmoud Abbas said he had asked UN chief Ban Ki-moon to help in bringing the refugees to the Palestinian territories.

This could include the West Bank, where Abbas governs, or the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip.

The request was reported Wednesday by the official Wafa news agency. It follows an attack by Syrian warplanes against a Palestinian refugee camp in Damascus.

The statement said there are 450,000 Palestinian refugees living in 10 camps in Syria.

Abbas said the biggest camp, Yarmouk, ''has been through a difficult situation due to the escalating conflict in Syria''.

Any movement of refugees into the West Bank would need the consent of Israel. Israel's Foreign Ministry had no comment.

Updated Dec 19, 2012 10:46am

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