Around 16,000 civilians have fled strife-torn parts of Syria’s Aleppo as the rebels lost all of the northern neighbourhoods of their stronghold, UN official said on Tuesday, describing the situation as “chilling”.
“The intensity of attacks on eastern Aleppo neighbourhoods over the past few days has forced thousands of civilians to flee to other parts of the city,” UN humanitarian chief Stephen O’Brien said in a statement, MAP news agency reported.
He pointed to reports from the UN’s humanitarian partners on the ground indicating that “up to 16,000 people have been displaced, many into uncertain and precarious situations”.
O’Brien voiced concern over the “deeply alarming and chilling situation unfolding” across all of Aleppo.
The situation in eastern Aleppo is dire, with intensified ground fighting and indiscriminate aerial bombardment reportedly killing and injuring many civilians, he said.
“There are no functioning hospitals left, and official food stocks are practically finished”.
At the same time, indiscriminate shelling on government-held western Aleppo has killed and injured civilians and has displaced more than 20,000 people in recent weeks, he said.
“The parties to the conflict in Syria have shown time and again that they are willing to take any action to secure military advantage even if it means killing, maiming or starving civilians into submission in the process,” he said.
O’Brien also pointed to the some 700,000 people living in other besieged areas across war-ravaged Syria.
O’Brien urged all parties to the conflict “to restore basic humanity in Syria,” insisting that “the people of Syria have suffered far too much and for far too long”.