Syria: Time running out to protect those trapped in eastern Aleppo, UN aid chief warns

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Warning of an urgent humanitarian situation in Syria’s eastern Aleppo city, the United Nations humanitarian chief today reiterated a call for a cessation of violence, medical evacuation of hundreds of patients in critical conditions, as well as safe, full, regular and unimpeded humanitarian access.

“I am deeply alarmed by the ferocious pummeling of eastern Aleppo city where an estimated 275,000 people are besieged,” the Emergency Relief Coordinator, Stephen O’Brien, said in a statement issued by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs which he heads.

The clock is ticking. Stop the carnage now.

“Indiscriminate bombing and shelling continues in a shocking and unrelenting manner, killing and maiming civilians, subjecting them to a level of savagery that no human should have to endure,” added Mr. O’Brien, who is also the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs.

He expressed concern that the health care system in eastern Aleppo is “all but obliterated” with medical facilities being hit one by one. He said he received reports of attacks on at least three hospitals, including a pediatric one providing services to thousands of sick and injured children.

“The health system is on the verge of total collapse with patients being turned away and no medicines available to treat even the most common ailments,” he warned.

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