The medical charity Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has criticized the “unprecedented” number of attacks on medical facilities it supports worldwide, especially in Syria. The Assad regime and Russian air forces continue with the deadly bombing campaign on Aleppo, targeting mainly vital civilian facilitates such as hospitals and civil defense centers.
MSF President Meinie Nicolai on Sunday said that “hospitals are now part of the battlefield,” adding that in Syria, “attacks against medical centres for civilians and against ambulances are systematic.”
Nicolai pointed out that health facilities and staff, especially in Syria, are targeted most often in the name of war against terrorism.
Stephen O’Brien, UN Under-Secretary for Humanitarian Affairs, said that civilians in the rebel-held part of Aleppo are enduring a “living hell,” calling for the immediate evacuation of hundreds of people who need urgent medical care.
“I am deeply alarmed by the ferocious pummelling of eastern Aleppo city,” O’Brien said in a statement released on Sunday.
“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” O’Brien added.
“We are in a race against time to protect and save civilians in eastern Aleppo city. They need our urgent action to bring an end to their living hell.” Words are not enough, the UN humanitarian chief said. He warned that “the health system [in Aleppo] is on the verge of total collapse with patients being turned away and no medicines available to treat even the most common ailments.”
Britain’s Foreign Minister Boris Johnson echoed MSF’s concerns, criticizing the Assad regime and Russia. He described airstrikes by Russia and the regime against hospitals in Syria as war crimes.
“It is the continuing savagery of the Assad regime against the people of Aleppo and the complicity of the Russians in committing what are patently war crimes – bombing hospitals, when they know they are hospitals and nothing but hospitals – that is making it impossible for peace negotiations to resume,” Johnson said on Sunday.
The Syrian Coalition’s legal committee on Friday submitted a memorandum to the UN Security Council to protest against the genocidal war the Assad regime and its Russian and Iranian allies are waging in Aleppo. The memorandum said that the ongoing brutal onslaught on besieged Aleppo is aimed at emptying the city of its indigenous population and bringing about a demographic change. (Source: Syrian Coalition + Agencies)