UNRWA demands humanitarian access to Yarmouk

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The UN Agency assisting Palestinian refugees (UNRWA) is increasingly concerned at the continued prevention of access for desperately needed humanitarian assistance to Palestinian civilians in Yarmouk.

A statement from the agency says the Syrian authorities and all concerned parties have the power to allow UNRWA to deliver safely humanitarian assistance into Yarmouk, to ease the intense suffering that Palestinian civilians are enduring there. And it calls on Syria to "exercise this power for the sake of humanity".

UNRWA says that since July this year, in spite of its' numerous appeals and efforts, Palestinian civilians and others who remain in Yarmouk have had little or no freedom of movement or access to humanitarian assistance.

It says the result is a grave humanitarian situation: in addition to facing death and serious injury from the armed conflict, Yarmouk's civilian residents are exposed to psychological trauma, malnutrition and a lack of health care.

UNRWA says Syrian authorities and all parties must demonstrate that they are willing to take steps to avoid human suffering and are capable of fulfilling their legal obligations to protect civilians, noting that these can be achieved by allowing UNRWA safe access to serve Palestinian civilians inside Yarmouk.

UNRWA also appeals with renewed urgency to all parties to the conflict and to the international community to resolve the conflict in Syria through a peaceful process of mediation and dialogue.

Donn Bobb, United Nations.

Duration: 1’20″

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