First Aid Convoy since June Enters Syria’s Homs: ICRC

First Aid Convoy since June Enters Syria’s Homs: ICRC
Thu Jul 14, 2016 22:50:32

The first aid convoy since mid-June has reached a besieged suburb of Syria’s Western city of Homs, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) says.


A boy unloads aid parcels in the Damascus suburb of Zamalka, Syria, June 29, 2016. ©Reuters

An ICRC spokeswoman said a total of 19 trucks carrying wheat flour, water, medical items and sanitation material arrived in the al-Waer neighborhood on Thursday in a joint convoy of the United Nations, the Syrian Red Crescent and the ICRC.

The last aid convoy entered the besieged area on June 16.

The UN estimated that some 588,000 people live in 18 besieged districts across Syria.

A convoy of the Syrian Red Crescent trucks carrying aid drives through the Damascus suburb of Zamalka, Syria, June 29, 2016. ©AFP

Aid agencies have repeatedly demanded regular access to the blockaded regions, warning that one-off deliveries quickly run out.

Last month, UN humanitarian advisor Jan Egeland said that despite some recent positive momentum, not a single siege had been lifted and fighting had increased in Syria. He further expressed concerns that there were no guarantees that aid access would continue in the violence-wracked state.

A ceasefire brokered by the US and Russia went into effect in Syria on February 27, but it does not apply to the Nusra Front and Daesh terrorist groups.

Renewed violence in some parts of Syria, particularly around Aleppo, has recently left the truce in tatters.

UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura estimates that over 400,000 people have been killed in the Syrian crisis since March 2011. The UN has stopped its official casualty count in the Middle Eastern state, citing its inability to verify the figures it receives from various sources.

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