By: Mana Honarpisheh
The United States has joined calls for humanitarian aid to be allowed into rebel-held parts of Syria to help earthquake victims. As a result of the severe earthquake in Turkey and Syria last week, more than 35 thousand people have lost their lives in these two countries, and at least 4,300 of these deaths have been reported in Syria.
Bashar al-Assad, the president of Syria, has also been asked to issue permission for universal access to send humanitarian aid.
It was previously reported that international efforts to send aid to Syria were not fast enough. In this regard, it was said that the Syrian government has agreed to send UN aid to these areas, which have been involved in a severe civil war since 2011.
According to reports, hundreds of thousands of people in northwestern Syria, which is controlled by rebels opposed to Bashar al-Assad’s government, are facing many problems, including the lack of access of foreign aid and rescue groups to these areas.
There is one another article about Turkey’s earthquake, here.
On Saturday, a report was received from southern Turkey that the unrest has hampered rescue efforts following the deadly earthquake on Monday. German rescuers and the Austrian army called off the search operation citing fighting between unidentified groups.
An aid worker said the security situation is expected to worsen as food stocks dwindle. According to local media reports, almost 50 people have been arrested for looting and several weapons have been seized.
A spokesperson of the Austrian army said on Saturday morning that the conflict between unknown groups in Khatay province caused dozens of personnel of the Austrian forces’ relief unit to take refuge in a camp, along with a number of international organizations’ crews.