As humanitarian convoys gain access to hard-to-reach areas in Syria, some United Nations agencies are speaking out about fresh dangers to aid workers.
In Rural Damascus, an inter-agency convoy today delivered life-saving assistance to 15,000 people in need in the hard-to-reach town of Serghaya for the first time since February, according to a United Nations spokesperson.
“The convoy contains food, education, health, water, sanitation and hygiene, and other basic relief items,” spokesperson Farhan Haq told journalists in New York.
Attacks on medical facilities throughout Syria are posing additional challenges to humanitarian work in Syria, according to the UN World Health Organization (WHO).
The agency today said that it has reports of up to 40 confirmed attacks on health care facilities across Syria in 2016, with nearly 60 per cent of public hospitals in the country closed or are only partially functional.
“These latest events represent a serious setback for the affected community and an additional challenge to humanitarian work in Syria,” the agency said today in a news release referring to recent attacks on three hospitals in the country’s Aleppo and Idleb governorates.
“It is unacceptable that such attacks on health care, which violate international humanitarian law, are increasing in both frequency and scale.”
Meanwhile, the UN relief agency charged with the well-being of Palestinian refugees across the Middle East has confirmed that one of its staff was killed in Aleppo. The UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) deplored the loss of life on 17 July of Yaser Mahmoud Shuaeeb, one of its drivers, who was struck by shrapnel fragments in his back as he was getting off a bus on his way home. He is the 18th UNRWA staff member killed in Syria.
The UN Agency reiterated its call “to all parties to the conflict to respect and comply with their obligations to protect and safeguard civilian lives,” according to a statement released yesterday.
Source: United Nations
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