UN aid agencies say more aid goes to Syria earthquake victims but still not enough — Global issues
total 14 trucks pass each other into opposition-held areas in Syria from Türkiye at Bab al-Hawa, the UN migration agency, IOMconfirmed.
That border gate is the only one authorized by the United Nations to transport aid Security Councilreminded calls – including from the Secretary-General – “ARRIVE explore all possible avenues to get aid and personnel into all affected areas“.
The entrance is obstructed
Responding to growing international calls for faster and easier access to northwestern Syria via new routes, the United Nations World Food Program (UNWFP)WFP) said it was ready to deliver supplies there, even though roads were damaged by Monday’s quake.
“That slows down our delivery,” said Corinna Fleischer, WFP Regional Director for the Middle East, North Africa and Eastern Europe. “We need to be able to cross the border, we need customs officials present in sufficient numbers…We need all parties to do the right thing now.”
The WFP official stressed that cross-border deliveries need to restart and be stepped up from government-controlled areas into opposition territory, as she explained that the whole 90 percent of people in the northwest depend on humanitarian assistance.
United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR) said, adding that it hopes an agreement with the Government will allow “rapid and regular access” to the northwest.
supply is exhausted
“We are running out of stock and we need access to bring in new stock,” said Miss Fleischer, as she noted calling for the reopening of the border crossing at Bab al-Salam – also into northwestern Syria –.
In the first four days since the deadly earthquake hit the area, WFP has provided food assistance to 115,000 people in Syria and Türkiyeit reports.
According to the latest reports, more than 22,000 people have died, and tens of thousands are too scared to return to buildings they fear might collapse, forcing them to sleep in cars, tents and anywhere. where they could find shelter, amid frigid winter temperatures. .
WFP has provided hot meals, set meals and home food packages that do not require cooking equipment.
Ms Fleischer said: “For thousands of people affected by the earthquake, food is one of the top needs today and our priority is to get it into the hands of those who need it quickly.
Total, WFP asks for $77 million for food rations and hot meals for 874,000 people affected by earthquakes in Türkiye and Syria. This includes 284,000 newly displaced people in Syria and 590,000 in Türkiyeincluding 45,000 refugees and 545,000 internally displaced persons.
Health First Aid
In another update, the United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) says it’s released medical supplies in northwest Syria to 16 hospitals treating survivors of Monday’s earthquake.
On Thursday, trauma medical and surgical supplies from the WHO logistics center in Dubai also arrived in Türkiye, but demand remains huge, with hundreds of clinics in both Türkiye and Syria damaged in disaster, along with many hospitals.
Expert international emergency medical teams coordinated by WHO have been deployed “and there will be more” to complement the national teams that have worked hard, said WHO spokeswoman Dr. Margaret Harris.
“We provide a wider range of services when appropriate and needed,” continued Dr. Harris, especially to expectant mothers. “Of course, we do have trauma specialists who can handle a wide range of fractures, crush injuries, know how to handle complications and can bring expertise to the table. as well as their specialized equipment.”
An astonishing 5.3 million people are homeless
As the UN and partners ramp up aid efforts, the UN refugee agency, UNHCR, says some 5.3 million people in Syria may have lost their homes by the disaster at the beginning of the week.
“There are 6.8 million people who have been displaced within the country. And this happened before the earthquake,” said Sivanka Dhanapala, UNHCR Representative in Syria, speaking from Damascus.
Providing shelter and relief items remains at the heart of the UNCHR response and ensures that the displaced people’s collective centers have adequate facilities, tents, plastic sheets, blankets and shelters. heat, sleeping mats and winter clothing.