Deal allows UN and partners to help evacuate hundreds from four Syrian towns

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A Syrian refugee family in Lebanon. Ongoing fighting has displaced millions of people both within and outside the country.  File Photo: WFP/Sandy Maroun

More than 450 people, some of whom were wounded, have been successfully evacuated from four towns in Syria following a local agreement, the UN and its partners announced on Monday.

The people were transported by land and air through Turkey and Lebanon to agreed final destinations where those requiring longer term medical care will receive it.

Dianne Penn reports.

The simultaneous evacuations were facilitated through the UN in Syria together with partners that included the Syrian Arab Red Crescent, the Lebanese Red Cross and the International Committee of the Red Cross.

Although the UN and its partners are not party to the Four Towns Agreement, they released a joint statement expressing their eagerness to see it implemented.

They described the situation in the towns as "difficult."

The humanitarian partners said they stand ready to continue providing relief and assistance to the millions of Syrians facing the country's ongoing conflict.

They estimated that approximately 4.5 million people are living in areas that are hard to access, almost one-tenth of whom are in besieged areas with little or no access to basic supplies or assistance.

And they urged all parties to find a political solution to the conflict, and to ensure unimpeded and sustained humanitarian access.

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration: 1’01″

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