Syrian Forces Shell Idlib and Aleppo, Target Displacement Camp
The humanitarian situation in northwestern Syria, especially in Idlib and Aleppo is once again fragile because of heavy shelling by the Syrian forces since the beginning of October. Three hospitals were hit, and a displacement camp was destroyed, amid a lack of essential services and basic necessities like food and water.
Tens of thousands of civilians, who have been displaced by years of war, have once again been moved because of attacks by the Syrian army. According to Doctors Without Borders, at least 78,000 people have been displaced. Providing humanitarian aid is a challenge because of ongoing hostilities.
Access to Healthcare a Major Challenge in Aleppo
Siham Hajaj, MSF Head of Mission for Northwest Syria, said about 19 hospitals in Idlib and Western Aleppo have stopped providing non-essential services to focus on providing emergency care to respond to the casualties, making access to health care even more challenging.
“These resources, trauma and surgical capabilities, are already limited in the area. This is important for providing care to those injured in the war, as well as dealing with the long-term effects of increased explosive contamination in populated areas.”
Abo Mahmood Al Homsi, MSF medical activity manager in Idlib, highlighted that local health authorities are urging medical personnel to prioritize emergency care for those most in need and for medical specialists to assist major referral hospitals in Idlib and closer to the frontline. “We are in contact with hospitals and medical facilities on the frontlines, to inform them that we are fully prepared to receive patients directly.”
Idlib Needs Urgent Help
Hajaj said urgent action needs to be taken to improve trauma and surgical capabilities in Idlib. “These resources are already limited in the area.” He highlighted it is important for providing care to those injured in the war, as well as dealing with the long-term effects of increased explosive contamination in populated areas.”
Abdurrahman Mustafa, head of the Syrian Interim Government, said intense attacks by the Damascus administration on civilian settlements in Idlib and Aleppo are reminiscent of the 2019 – 2020 attacks. Tens of thousands of civilians were left homeless. He pointed out that the Assad regime is experiencing a crisis in the regions it controls.