internally displaced people
refugees outside Syria
Syrians in need of humanitarian assistance
Civilians at the heart of the conflict
Since the beginning of the war in 2011, violence against Syrian civilians has only intensified and become more complex. Many areas have been bombed regularly and civilian populations are the victims of human rights violations and abuses, under fire from the government and the armed opposition forces, their respective allies and extremist factions.
A lack of access to healthcare facilities, water and food
The humanitarian situation in Syria remains extremely difficult throughout the country, mainly in the north-west, in the Idlib region, where displaced people converge. There is a lack of access to healthcare facilities, water and food, and there is a blatant need for sanitation facilities, shelter and other goods.
Humanitarian missions and healthcare workers targeted in Syria
The delivery of humanitarian aid in Syria continues to pose difficulties, particularly in areas which are once again under the control of the Syrian regime, as well as in opposition areas where cross-border humanitarian aid has been reduced under pressure from the regime. There is now only one official border crossing, reducing the ability of humanitarian actors to deliver humanitarian aid to the population. Attacks on health workers, their vehicles, their equipment and healthcare infrastructures continue in violation of international humanitarian law and drastically reducing access to healthcare for the most vulnerable populations. Since the beginning of the uprising, health workers have been subject to a campaign of persecution, and humanitarian aid in opposition areas has been criminalised in Syria.
Our humanitarian work in Syria
Our humanitarian mission in Syria is primarily based on medical aid in response to the unequal access to healthcare and the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Supporting the Syrian population: a cornerstone of our humanitarian work in Syria
Since October 2012, Médecins du Monde has been working with Syrian nurses, midwives, pharmacists and doctors to provide primary healthcare and sexual and reproductive healthcare to vulnerable populations. These populations have often been displaced during the conflict, both in urban areas with health centres and in rural areas with mobile clinics across Syria.
In 2020, our humanitarian organisation provided high-quality primary and sexual and reproductive healthcare, including antenatal and postnatal care. 26,024 people received care in southern Syria.
Finally, our NGO provides emergency assistance in Syria by supplying essential medicines to meet the needs of the population affected by the conflict. The needs are particularly acute for people with chronic diseases, unvaccinated children, pregnant women without obstetric care, and those who generally lack access to sexual and reproductive healthcare.
The objectives of our work continue to be to protect civilians from further violence and abuse, as well as to provide unconditional medical assistance to vulnerable populations, both in rebel- and government-controlled areas. An estimated 12 million Syrians are in need of medical assistance. The availability of essential medicines and equipment, which are extremely scarce in conflict areas as well as in areas reconquered by the regime and devoid of health services, is ensured through local partners. Local healthcare staff are also supported and trained to ensure a continuity of services in a context where the public authorities no longer fund health facilities throughout the country, through training to strengthen their technical and medical capacities.
Responding to the disruption of the Covid-19 pandemic
2020 was a particularly harsh year for the Syrian population, which had already been durably impacted by a crisis that is about to enter its tenth year. This was compounded by the spread of COVID-19 due to the lack of information and prevention awareness, as well as the lack of access to healthcare facilities.
Our organisation, therefore, provided a response to the COVID-19 pandemic in some areas of southern Syria, by supporting our local partner. Personal protective equipment (masks, gowns, etc.) for healthcare workers were transported to the site thanks to the support of our NGO. Finally, the local population was informed and made aware of preventive measures and how to detect symptoms. This was valuable medical aid in Syria, where the population has been spared nothing.
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