The US State Department spokesperson John Kirby called on the Assad regime on Friday to allow aid to reach towns in need. He also called for Russia to put pressure on Assad.
“We also urge Russia to use its influence with the Assad regime to get the regime to allow immediate and unfettered humanitarian assistance to reach those in need on an ongoing basis, can’t be a one-off,” Kirby said.
Qatar’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Khalid Al-Attiyah also said that “the continued insistence of the Syrian regime and its cronies in the use of the siege of civilian areas, including the use policy of starvation as a weapon is a war crime and a crime against humanity.”
In letters Qatar sent to the UN Security Council and the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Friday, Al-Attiyah said that “the blockade comes within the context of systematic policy by the Syrian regime and its cronies by using starvation as a weapon, and continues to prevent food, medical supplies and basic needs for the Syrian people as collective punishment, and imposes a siege on populated areas as is the case in the neighborhoods of the city of Homs and Eastern Ghouta and the towns of Darya and Moadamieh, Rural Damascus and others.”
Al-Attiyah expressed hope that “necessary measures would be taken to ensure the delivery of emergency humanitarian assistance promptly and regularly to trapped civilians in Madaya and all besieged areas, including mainly basic food and baby milk.”
Al-Attiyah noted that “in Madaya, the regime military supported by its pro militias had imposed a tight siege on the town in an attempt to give a choice of its population between hunger or kneeling to a regime that continues to kill its people.” (Source: Agencies)