THE HAGUE, February 7, 2022 – With search-and-rescue efforts underway and a soaring death toll from Monday’s powerful earthquake and aftershocks in Turkiye and Syria, Center for Civilians in Conflict (CIVIC) joins the growing list of international voices pressuring the Syrian government and its allies to refrain from leading military operations that would cause further civilian casualties in hard hit Northwest Syria and to allow aid to reach all affected areas without restriction.
The natural disaster has rapidly compounded the already destructive effects of the human-made disaster created by Syrian government forces’ attacks and their allies across the region for nearly 12 years.
“With a devastated healthcare infrastructure throughout Northwest Syria, responding to this catastrophe within a catastrophe requires the Syrian government to immediately forego any obstructive policies that hinder external support from swiftly reaching impacted civilians,” said Federico Borello, Executive Director at CIVIC. “We must all stand against any attempt to weaponize humanitarian aid. Assistance should be delivered in accordance with humanitarian principles. It should reach those who are the most in need wherever they are, including in opposition-held areas.”
In the wake of this crisis, CIVIC also reiterates the White Helmets’ plea for local authorities, civil forces, and humanitarian organizations operating in Syria to join forces, share resources, and provide aid.
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