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Humanitarian Aid Convoy Reaches 50,000 Displaced Syrians
More than seven years of brutal civil war have created a complex humanitarian crisis in Syria. Half the prewar population have fled their homes; 13.1 million people require urgent assistance. Since the conflict began, UNICEF has been working to protect children and to provide nutrition, education, health care, water, sanitation and hygiene support. Please help the children of Syria now.
An interagency convoy is delivering badly needed humanitarian aid to 50,000 people struggling to survive in a remote camp in the southeast Syrian desert near the Jordanian border. An estimated 80 percent of the people stranded in Rukban camp are women and children. Conditions have deteriorated sharply since the last aid delivery, in January. Food prices in local markets have increased significantly and several children have died due to poor sanitary conditions and a lack of health care in the camp.
"We are delivering food, sanitation and hygiene supplies, nutrition and health assistance in addition to other core relief items in cooperation with the Syrian Arab Red Crescent," said Ali Al-Za'atari, U.N. Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in the Syrian Arab Republic. "We are also conducting an emergency vaccination campaign to protect some 10,000 children against measles, polio and other deadly diseases."
The first trucks loaded with nutrition and health supplies, family hygiene kits and winter clothes for children under 14 reached the camp's border on Saturday. Fleeing violence, families began arriving at the camp in late 2015, hoping to cross to safety in Jordan. Since Jordan closed its border in 2016, they have been trapped in the desert in Rukban.
"While this much-needed delivery is an important achievement, a longer-term solution must be found for the many civilians living in Rukban," said Al-Za'atari. "We must do everything we can to continue helping civilians living in the harshest conditions there."
Children didn't start the conflict in Syria. But they are paying the highest price. For children in Rukban and elsewhere in Syria, UNICEF calls for unimpeded, sustained and safe access.