News / Middle East

    US, UN Concerned About Besieged Syrians

    FILE - Syrian refugees wait to be approved to get into Jordan, in the Hadalat reception area, near the northeastern Jordanian border with Syria, and Iraq, near the town of Ruwaished, Jan. 14, 2016.
    FILE - Syrian refugees wait to be approved to get into Jordan, in the Hadalat reception area, near the northeastern Jordanian border with Syria, and Iraq, near the town of Ruwaished, Jan. 14, 2016.
    VOA News

    The United States expressed deep concern Monday about the humanitarian situation in Syria where the U.N. says 13.5 million people are in need of aid nationwide.

    U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Samantha Power called particular attention to 15 areas under siege, saying the Syrian government is responsible for 12 of the blockades and that at least 35 people have died there since the beginning of December.

    She called on all parties in Syria to allow unhindered access to humanitarian groups.

    'Need signs of hope'

    "More than ever, the Syrian people need signs of hope that they are not destined to live in conflict indefinitely," Power said.

    U.N. aid agencies warned Monday that 200,000 people in the besieged eastern city of Deir el-Zour face "sharply deteriorating conditions" and are in urgent need of food and medical supplies.

    U.N. deputy spokesman Farhan Haq said the world body has approval to airlift aid to the area, but that heavy fighting has prevented the operation from taking place.

    The U.N., Syrian Arab Red Crescent and the International Red Cross have been partnering on aid deliveries to two besieged towns near the Libyan border and two others farther north near the Turkish border.

    Aid postponed

    They said in a joint statement that aid to Foua and Kafraya in the north had to be postponed after rebels told them they needed more time to finalize security arrangements. The agencies pledged to continue working to reach people in those towns and see what help they need.

    U.N. humanitarian chief Stephen O'Brien said in a letter Sunday that he is "angry and frustrated" about the situation in the besieged areas and noted that he and others have repeatedly called for sieges to no longer be used as a weapon against civilians.

    "But let me be clear, only a political solution for peace and the respect for international humanitarian law by all parties will make the biggest difference for Syrians seeking assistance and for humanitarian organizations the ability to provide it," he said.

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    Comments
         
    by: KoreyD from: Canada
    January 19, 2016 1:39 PM
    I do hope that the plight of these people can be alleviated. However I see very little about the Yemenis that are being bombed by Saudi Arabia with American backing, American weapons and an American miliatary blockade of Yemen. There have been over 6000 deaths, there is very little food and the Saudis are being accused of deliberately bombing hospitals by Doctors without Borders. It seems the plight of the Syrian, while deplorable is being used as a propaganda tool by the west just inflame public opinion

    by: meanbill from: USA
    January 19, 2016 7:35 AM
    Ever since the Russians entered the Syrian war on the side of the Syrian government and have pushed the terrorists back to Syrian city enclaves, the US, NATO and their Sunni Muslim allies have been protesting that they can't get a Russian and Syrian army ceasefire to bring aid to their terrorist allies in their war against the Shia Muslim led government of Assad and Syria?

    If the US, NATO and their Sunni Muslim allies really cared about the Syrian people, they wouldn't have armed and trained those tens of thousands of (foreign) Sunni Muslim extremists, fanatics and insane in Turkey and Jordan to wage war on the Shia Muslim led government of Assad and Syria, (even though they had no loyalty or allegiance to the US or Syria whatsoever), and most of them ended up joining the ISIL and al-Qaeda? .. Remember that tens of thousands of innocent men, women and children are being raped, enslaved, tortured and killed by the ISIL since 2013, [but now], the US and their allies are more worried about their US supported terrorist allies and their supporters aren't getting enough aid from them?
    In Response

    by: Kim
    January 19, 2016 12:06 PM
    Well said.

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