UN warns of 'healthcare collapse' in Syria

The UN humanitarian relief coordinator said healthcare has collapsed in Syria, as more than three years of conflict left tens of thousands dead and millions displaced.

UN warns of 'healthcare collapse' in Syria

World Bulletin / News Desk

Healthcare in war-torn Syria has collapsed, warned the United Nations' emergency relief coordinator, Valerie Amos, on Wednesday.

“The Syrian government and opposition forces have systematically attacked hospitals, ambulances, doctors and other healthcare professionals," Amos said in the 67th World Health Assembly meeting in Geneva.

"We have situations of conflict where government has made it clear that they don't think that opposition fighters have a right to medical attention," Amos added.

The conflict in Syria has killed over 100,000 people, according to the U.N., which announced in January this year that it had ended its death toll count.

The Syrian regime has been reluctant to heed calls by the opposition and international actors on opening humanitarian corridors into civilian regions. An opposition bid to bring up aid corridors during the abortive February negotiations between the regime and the opposition fell flat after the talks broke apart.

The ongoing fighting, which entered its fourth year in March, has displaced more than 9 million people, with over 2 and a half million registered as refugees in neighboring countries, the U.N. says.

UN attacks 'flagrant disregard' of law in Aleppo

The suffering of residents in Aleppo is a consequence of a "flagrant disregard" for international law in Syria, the UN's High Commissioner for Human Rights has said.

In a statement on Wednesday, Navi Pillay condemned the Syrian government and some armed groups in the country for ignoring international human rights and humanitarian law which led to the suffering of people in Syria's Aleppo Governorate.

“The people of Aleppo have been living in terrifying conditions, with intensified shelling and aerial attacks over the past six months, including through the rampant use of barrel bombs,” she said.

"Sustained rocket and barrel-bomb attacks on populated areas of Aleppo are being carried out in grave violation of international humanitarian and human rights law. Barrel bombs, when used in populated areas where civilians are still present, clearly have an indiscriminate impact."

The High Commissioner added that water systems in Aleppo have been repeatedly damaged and there are water shortages in certain areas of Aleppo City which pose serious health threats to tens of thousands of people.

Pillay said, "The water grid in Aleppo has had to be repaired dozens of times in the month of April alone, mostly to fix damage caused by aerial bombardment and shelling."

Last Mod: 22 Mayıs 2014, 09:24
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