UNICEF airlifts humanitarian supplies for conflict-affected children in SyriaListen /
Urgently-needed vaccines and complementary food for children in Syria have arrived in Beirut and will be moved by truck into Syria, the UN children's agency said Thursday.
The cargo plane contained around 28.6 tonnes of supplies, including 265,000 doses of Measles Mumps and Rubella vaccines, and super-cereal, a complementary fortified food for children 6-23 months of age.
The agency said the vaccines are needed to replenish supplies being used in the Ministry of Health-led vaccination campaign currently underway in Syria.
UNICEF Syria Representative Youssouf Abdel-Jelil, said "The campaign is especially important because it is reaching children who have already missed out on their routine vaccinations," adding, "Delivery of the vaccines by air was the fastest option in this case. In turn, the super-cereal will help to meet urgent nutritional needs amongst some of Syria's most vulnerable young infants."
As the conflict continues in Syria, the nutritional status of some children is becoming increasingly precarious. Hospitals visited by UNICEF staff are reporting an upward trend in the number of children being admitted with moderate and severe acute malnutrition compared to two years ago. Reports from partners in areas including Rural Damascus, Aleppo, and Homs confirm this trend.
UNICEF Syria, together with partners, will be targeting 50,000 children over the next three months to benefit from this nutrition programme in some of the worst-affected areas in Syria.
Donn Bobb, United Nations.