By editor - 11 August, 2016
Courtesy: Independent Catholic News – http://www.indcatholicnews.com
CAFOD is urging all parties to the Syria conflict to allow the unimpeded delivery of humanitarian aid to civilians trapped in east Aleppo, and for the international community to do more to put in place a ceasefire.
“The international community cannot remain paralysed by the horrors of the Syria conflict, we must take urgent steps to restore a ceasefire, end attacks on civilians and resume peace talks. If we act now we can keep hope alive for the Syrian people,” said Alan Thomlinson, CAFOD’s Syria Crisis Programme Manager.
“Humanitarian access to vulnerable people is absolutely vital, there must be safe, unrestricted passage of aid to all parts of Syria.”
A quarter of a million people are besieged in the east of Syria’s city Aleppo, as the battle intensifies between government and rebel forces.
Living in appalling and horrific circumstances the people of east Aleppo have been completely cut off from humanitarian aid since early July. Access to food, clean water, and health services are now in short supply.
“The targeting of civilians and the starvation of unarmed men, women and children as a tactic of war is inhumane and illegal under international humanitarian law,” said Thomlinson.
Life in the city has been made even worse by the relentless air strikes and heavy shelling, with attacks on homes, hospitals and medical facilities.
According to the UN, the health system in Aleppo has been devastated, with four military attacks on hospitals, and only 30 doctors left to tend to the daily influx of patients injured in bombing and shelling attacks.
The UN also reports that over 120,000 children are in need of nutrition.
Alan Thomlinson said, “The humanitarian crisis in Syria and especially in east Aleppo has reached horrifying levels, humanitarian aid should be delivered to all regardless of whether they flee the city or decide to stay.”
The conflict in Syria is now the world’s biggest and most urgent humanitarian crisis.
More than a quarter of a million people have died in the conflict since its start in March 2011, and today more than 13.5 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance across Syria.