Syria UN aid chief calls regime siege in Aleppo “medieval and shameful”

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region—The United Nations has called for humanitarian truces in Syria’s second city Aleppo as the regime steps up its offensive against opposition-held districts in the city’s besieged east.

The UN aid chief, Stephen O’Brien, has said the regime siege on Aleppo’s east is “medieval and shameful.” He warned that at least 250,000 were under siege and the humanitarian situation in that part of Aleppo deteriorating.

O’Brien said the UN had prepared food for the “sad but all too real anticipation of such developments.”

“But food in east Aleppo is expected to run out by the middle of next month,” he warned.

“The international community simply cannot let eastern Aleppo city become yet another – and by far the largest – besieged area,” he added.

O’Brien called for weekly 48-hour humanitarian truces to allow in aid for the trapped civilians in the city.

Regime forces managed to close off the Costello Road to the opposition earlier this month, severing their hitherto remaining supply line to their parts of the city.

Russia’s UN Ambassador, Vitaly Churkin, dismissed the humanitarian implications of the closure by simply saying that the road was used to provide “terrorists with weapons and armaments, as well as for the passage of jihad mobiles with suicide bombers.”


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