People Displaced from Eastern Ghouta Suffer Dire Humanitarian Conditions

The humanitarian situation in Syria’s north has further worsened following the arrival of the people who were forcibly displaced from eastern Ghouta in Rural Damascus. The overpopulated Idlib province suffers lack of adequate housing and shortages of foodstuffs as well as lack of enough health facilities to treat victims of the barbaric bombardment by the Assad and Russian forces.

According to figures compiled by the Syrian Interim Government (SIG), nearly three million people live in Idlib province, many of whom were forcibly displaced from various areas across Syria by the Assad regime. The Syrian Coalition said that the mass forced displacement, which is aimed at bringing about a demographic change in Syria, constituted war crimes.

According to a new report by the emergency response coordinators in northern Syria, the people who were displaced from eastern Ghouta were distributed to 201 locations in Idlib province and western rural Aleppo. They noted that there was great difficulty in sheltering all the displaced people because of lack of adequate housing.

Sheltering centers in the province can accommodate only a limited number of displaced persons, let alone that they are not equipped to accommodate all the new arrivals, the report added.

According to the report, the people who were displaced from eastern Ghouta include around 20,000 who are sick and injured. It noted that the illness and injuries were caused by bombardment and undernourishment resulting from the siege and chronic diseases. The figure does not include the people who were displaced from the town of Douma, the report added.

The Syrian Coalition earlier called on the United Nations to provide support for the forcibly displaced persons and to develop an international emergency response program to alleviate their suffering.

Just like in all rebel-held areas, the Assad regime had adopted policies aimed at putting the civilian population of eastern Ghouta in front of two choices: surrender or leave.

The Coalition stressed that allowing war criminals in Syria to escape punishment and the United Nation’s failure to establish an effective mechanism to hold accountable violators of international resolutions have further aggravated the humanitarian situation in Syria.