The United Nations Security Council discussed the appalling situation in some of the besieged Syrian towns on Monday, after reports of thousands of citizens being trapped and starving to death came out. Following this, a humanitarian convoy has finally reached the Syrian town of Madaya with life saving health and food supplies from the UN.
A U.N. spokesman said, aid trucks were also en route to the Shi’ite villages of al Foua and Kefraya in the northwestern province of Idlib, two other areas where there is a desperate need for humanitarian assistance.
According to UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Syria, Yacoub El Hillo, it has taken long and patient negotiations with many parties to facilitate the convoy, whose first trucks are now being unloaded to start relieving the situation. UN officials last week, called the blockade and the starvation that followed, as “horrendous” and “ghastly,” noting that, deliberate starvation of civilians amounts to war crimes.
The life saving items include health, nutrition, and food supplies, shelter materials, blankets, and soaps, amongst other items. Earlier, the NGO group Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) reported that 23 people starved to death in Madaya in December, including six children, and people trying to leave have been reported to have been killed.
Madaya, located about 25km northwest of Damascus and 11km from the border with Lebanon, has been besieged by pro-Assad forces and allied Lebanese Shia militia of Hezbollah, since July last year.