Syria: UN 3.5 million people under siege or without aid

40 doctors remain for 2.5 million residents in Aleppo

24 April, 14:23

    (ANSAmed) - BEIRUT, APRIL 24 - Three and a half million people in Syria live in areas under siege or impossible for humanitarian assistance to reach, the United Nations (UN) said today. The UN called on ''all the parties'' to permit humanitarian access and put an end to ''indiscriminate bombing and shelling of civilians.'' In its appeal, the UN drew a catastrophic picture of the country where 9.3 million people are affected by conflict, 60% of health centers are destroyed, and a third of water treatment facilities are out of service. Humanitarian access to those in need are too often denied by both sides, said the UN document signed by Valerie Amos, UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, along with heads of agencies involved in relief efforts - UNHCR, UNICEF, World Food Programme and the World Health Organization. Just in the city of Aleppo and its provinces, more than one million people need food and other humanitarian aid due to the intensification of clashes in recent weeks.

    Only 40 doctors - compared to 2,000 in the past - remain to face a population of 2.5 million residents in a city that was once Syria's main economic centre, according to the UN.

    ''What have not failed are the courage and determination of extraordinary Syrian civilians to survive,'' said the UN. (ANSAmed).

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