The Syrian Crisis
In the absence of a political solution, human rights violations and abuse continue to occur in the context of widespread insecurity and in disregard of International Law, International Humanitarian Law, and Human Rights Law. Over 500,000 people have been killed and over one million injured. More than half of all Syrians have been forced to leave their homes, often multiple times, making Syria the largest displacement crisis globally. According to the Emergency Response Coordinating Center (ERCC) there are over 5 million total Syrian refugees, and 6.5 million IDP's inside Syria, these numbers are constantly growing. Click here to read the UNOCHA page about the Syrian crisis.
The conflict in Syria is now in its sixth year, creating the largest humanitarian crisis of our time. Millions of people are in need of emergency assistance such as medical and food assistance, water and shelter. Over 974,000 Syrians are living in besieged areas throughout Syria, according to UNOCHA, with minimal access to medical care and humanitarian relief.
There has also been an alarming rise in the targeting of hospitals, medical facilities, and even medical personnel, by a vast variety of weaponry including chemical weapons. UOSSM estimates that since March 2011 through September 2016 at least 710 medical staff (doctors, nurses, medical personnel) have been killed and there have been at least 545 attacks on ~250 medical facilities, which have been documented, throughout Syria. All of these attacks have either destroyed, damaged, or halted the medical services provided to the Syrian people. In 2016 alone, through the end of September, over 185 attacks have been documented against healthcare facilities and at least 115 health workers were killed. Click here to read press releases of attacks.
The security situation is preventing aid workers from reaching those who are trapped by the fighting and who are in great need. Syria is now considered the most dangerous place on Earth to practice medicine.
The Syrian conflict has triggered the world’s largest humanitarian crisis since World War II. Humanitarian needs continue to rise, population displacements are increasing, and an entire generation of children is being exposed to war and violence, increasingly deprived of basic services, education and protection. See the ECHO Fact sheet on Syria for the latest facts and figures.