SYRIA: 4 years of horror met with indifference News

SYRIA: 4 years of horror met with indifference

SYRIA: 4 years of horror met with indifference

Four years after the start of the conflict, chaos is overwhelming Syria and the human toll is horrifying: more than 200,000 dead, half of them civilians, more than 1.5 million wounded and suffering serious and permanent after-effects, 11 million refugees and displaced people and more than 12 million Syrians – equivalent to half the total population – affected by the war.

“Words are inadequate to describe the atrocities suffered by these populations,” declares Dr Thierry Brigaud, president of Doctors of the World – Médecins du Monde France. “Yet assistance must continue to be provided. Our Syrian teams have been doing so round the clock on a daily basis for 4 years, displaying immense courage in the face of deafening media silence.”

This dismal anniversary is a reminder that Syrian civilians are still the primary victims of this barbarity. One of the few international organisations operating in Syria since the beginning of the crisis, Doctors of the World continues to provide assistance to those who need it. The organisation cares for and provides assistance to all civilians, including in areas which have passed under the control of the Islamic State. The human damage witnessed daily by Doctors of the World medical teams is extensive, caused by the regular use of deadly and destructive weapons in the form of barrel bombs and gas-canister missiles.

The humanitarian crisis is worsening every year with 7.6 million people now displaced throughout the country, and more than 4 million people in an emergency situation. Together with 9 Syrian partners, Doctors of the World is helping displaced people, principally in the governorates of Idlib, Alep, Deraa and Damas. Doctors of the World is offering primary and sexual and reproductive healthcare services in 3 fixed and 2 mobile clinics. Doctors of the World is supplying 70 Syrian healthcare facilities with drugs, equipment and medical consumables. Doctors of the World is providing training for healthcare staff. In 2014, 836,822 people had access to Doctors of the World consultations, an increase of 30% on 2013.

In addition to victims within the country, 4 million refugees are surviving in deplorable sanitary and living conditions. Regional tensions are growing and countries bordering Syria – Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan – are imposing tougher conditions on receiving refugees. Since the end of 2014, refugees in Jordan have been required to make a financial contribution to healthcare provided by government medical centres. With only limited access to employment, paying medical fees is becoming difficult if not impossible. Doctors of the World has decided to step up its activities to assist the most vulnerable individuals in Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey and Iraq.

To help the receiving countries cope with this influx, Doctors of the World demands that all United Nations Member States increase their financial support. Each State must also assume its responsibilities as regards accepting more Syrian refugees. Foremost among these is France which, having agreed to take just 500 individuals on humanitarian grounds since the beginning of the conflict and given the appalling humanitarian situation in Calais, must show proof of its solidarity with these thousands of men, women and children. Indifference and obliviousness must not be added to the sufferings of war.

Discover the testimony of refugees and Doctors of the World staff at the dedicated website: