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Syrian tragedy plays out on Jordan's streets

The majority of Jordan's 550,000 Syrian refugees live in urban areas, not camps.
Syrian refugees walk along a road in the Zaatari refugee camp, near the Jordanian city of Mafraq July 18, 2013. The refugee camp holds roughly 115,000 Syrian refugees in Jordan about 12 km (eight miles) from the Syrian border. REUTERS/Mandel Ngan/Pool (JORDAN - Tags: POLITICS SOCIETY IMMIGRATION) - RTX11QJ0

AMMAN, Jordan — The streets of Amman are filled with shops for Syrian food, sweets and fruits. Syrian stores are popular and known for their excellent services and good products, the owner of this brand new restaurant, Hazem Akkach, said proudly.

Akkach is one of the 550,000 Syrians scattered across Jordan, but his story cannot be compared to those of Syrian refugees on the daily news. 42-year-old Akkach opened his family business last month, and he is doing well — really well. He has many customers, and he can afford to rent a big house in the city center. However, behind this wealthy mask lies a dark story of fear, abductions and terror.

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