Syria: Restraint, humanitarian access badly needed in Damascus

21 February 2018
Syria: Restraint, humanitarian access badly needed in Damascus
Volunteers from Syrian Arab Red Crescent Society rush to provide medical aid. ©SARC

Damascus (ICRC) - The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is calling for restraint and access to the wounded after the deadly escalation of fighting that has hit Damascus in recent days.

"The fighting appears likely to cause much more suffering in the days and weeks ahead, and our teams need to be allowed to enter Eastern Ghouta to aid the wounded," said Marianne Gasser, the ICRC's head of delegation in Syria.

The medical personnel in Eastern Ghouta can't cope with the high number of injuries. The area does not have enough medicines and supplies, especially after medical facilities were reported to have been hit.

"Wounded victims are dying only because they cannot be treated in time. In some areas of Ghouta, entire families have no safe place to go," Ms Gasser said. "On the other side of the front line, people in Damascus are in constant fear that their children will be hit by falling mortars. This is madness and it has to stop. Civilians must not be targeted."

The ICRC and the Syrian Arab Red Crescent accessed Eastern Ghouta in December to facilitate the evacuation of 29 wounded patients. The ICRC's last humanitarian aid delivery to Eastern Ghouta took place in November.

For further information, please contact:
Ingy Sedky, ICRC Damascus, +963 930 336 718
Pawel Krzysiek, ICRC Damascus, tel.: +963 993 700 847
Iolanda Jaquemet, ICRC Geneva, +41 79 447 37 26