The Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations for Humanitarian Affairs, Stephen O'Brien, has said that around 13.5 million Syrians are currently in need of urgent humanitarian aid and protection, Anadolu reported on Tuesday.
O’Brien’s comments came during his briefing of the UN Security Council regarding the implementation of Resolution 1,239 on the humanitarian situation in Syria.
O’Brien said that there has been an increase of 1.2 million in the number of devastated Syrians over the last ten months. He reiterated that the Syrian regime and the armed groups are responsible for “violating international law and human rights in Syria.”
He described the situation in Syria as “the biggest displacement crisis in modern times.” There are currently 6.5 million internally displaced Syrians and 4.2 million who have been forced to leave the country.
O’Brien continued: “Violence has increased in recent weeks and led to massive repercussions on the humanitarian situation and a large number of displaced, mainly in the northern areas of the country.”
According to O’Brien, all sides of the conflict continue to target hospitals and healthcare facilities in Hama, Idlib and Aleppo, noting that at least 313 recent attacks, which led to the death of 679 medical staff, have been documented.
Meanwhile, the UN official noted the ongoing blockade of various villages and neighbourhoods in Syria.
“More than 393,700 people are now under siege, including 200,000 in Deir Al-Zour, which has been besieged by ISIS, 181,200 besieged by the regime forces in the Damascus countryside and 12,500 besieged by armed groups in other places inside Syria,” he said.
O’Brien called on the UNSC members to urgently move towards solving the Syrian issue, reminding them of his previous statements regarding the need for a political solution.