STATEMENT OF TARGETING THE HEALTH FACILITIES AND HUMANITARIAN WORKERS RECENTLY IN THE NW SYRIAShare Thursday 10th January 2019 01:10 PM
The recent development in NW Syria increased the suffering of humanitarian workers and humanitarian facilities in a way or another, in the morning of the first day of 2019, at about 08:00 a.m., Kinana Hospital, in the town of Daret Ezzeh, Aleppo western countryside, was targeted by artillery shells during clashes between Heyat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) and the movement of Noureddin Zingi. The clashes took place near the hospital, which resulted in the death of the nurse Mahmoud Jalu and injury of Dr. AbdulRahman Haj Bakr, in addition to other injuries among the hospital team.
Immediately, wounded persons and patients were evacuated to other hospitals in Aleppo countryside and work in the hospital was suspended until further notice due to the dangerous security situation. Targeting the hospital, which occurred during the encounters between the military factions, is one of many direct incidents harming humanitarian workers and facilities. Few days after this attack the Hamdo Alomar who used to work as the logistic coordinator for People In Need was found dead after 20 days of kidnapping him by a masked group who were asking for a ransom. These encounters take place frequently in north-west Syria, despite the de-escalation zones agreements and the Sochi agreement. For years, humanitarian facilities and workers in north Syria suffered a lot from attacks of the Syrian regime and its allies. Recently they became subject of kidnappings and arrests, in addition to attacks by the armed groups as was the case in Daret Azza.
With the escalation of clashes during the past three days, many other humanitarian facilities were obliged to suspend their works. Camps of IDPs around the town of Atmeh, which host hundreds of thousands of IDPs and which already suffer from bad weather and rain floods, became subject to the violence inflicted on them by these clashes, which will sure lead to a new wave of displacements, in addition to dozens of thousands of IDPs who live in the area of Ma’aret Alnuman who might be subject of violence due to the potential clashes in the area.
During the year 2018, over 137 attacks on health facilities and health workers were reported. They resulted in the killing of (97) health workers, in addition to many victims who forcibly disappeared, most of them heroes who stayed in Syria under threats of siege detention, so that they can serve their people and do their moral duty despite all security risks. The figures previously mentioned are victims of attacks on health teams and facilities only. In fact, there are larger numbers of victims among humanitarian workers who fell dead or wounded result of military clashes.
The undersigned organizations and entities call for:
1-All the conflicted parties to neutralize humanitarian facilities and humanitarian workers, especially hospitals and schools.
2. We call for all fighting factions to hold responsibility for the safety of humanitarian workers and responsibility of the suspension of humanitarian services in the area.
3. All influential countries in the region and guarantors of the de-escalation zones agreement and the buffer zones agreement to exert all the necessary pressure on all military parties to neutralize humanitarian facilities absolutely from any fighting.