150% rise in child malnutrition in North East Syria, says Save the Children

November 14, 2022
Children in Ain Issa, north-eastern Syria. Image: Medya News

British-based NGO Save the Children announced on November 11 that the number of malnourished children in North East Syria has increased by 150% in the past six months, and poverty rates have increased by 90%.

According to the Save the Children report, at least 10,000 more children have faced malnutrition in the past six months.

Save the Children’s Sara Ali said: “Poverty and the inability to afford food are the main reasons families are giving for this increase.”

According to Beat Rohr, Interim Syria Response Office Director, the ongoing conflict in parts of Syria, which has led to worsening economic conditions, “has become the main driver of need”.

Access to relief from humanitarian aid is also curtailed to the region. Since July 2020, aid deliveries have only been possible through the Bab al-Hawa border crossing on the Syria-Turkey border. Other border crossings were prevented due to successive Russian-Chinese vetoes.

This, in turn, exacerbates poverty and famine in North and East Syria, where approximately three million people live, including 150,000 refugees and Internally Displaced Persons residing in camps.

The Kurdish-led Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria has been calling on the United Nations Security Council since 2019 to reopen the al-Ya’rubiah border crossing so that humanitarian aid can be delivered to people in need.

Before the closure of Al-Ya’rubiyah 103 medical facilities were receiving aid from the north-eastern Syrian border crossing in 2020, according to a report by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to the Security Council.

[Reprinted from Medya News.]

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