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UN relief chief disappointed by attack on aid convoy in Syria's Homs

English.news.cn   2014-02-09 12:02:32

UNITED NATIONS, Feb. 8 (Xinhua) -- UN relief chief Valerie Amos expressed her disappointment on Saturday over an attack on a humanitarian aid convoy in Syria's besieged old Homs city.

"I am deeply disappointed that the three-day humanitarian pause agreed between the parties to the conflict was broken today and aid workers deliberately targeted," Amos, under-secretary-general for humanitarian affairs and emergency relief coordinator, said in a statement.

Earlier in the day, the rebels breached the UN-mediated truce by launching mortar attacks against a police department and a square where the aid convoys were stationing, Syria's official media said.

Meanwhile, four volunteers of the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) were injured in mortar attacks as a UN aid convey entered the besieged old city.

Saturday's attacks came only one day after the "humanitarian pause" went into effect, which was intended to allow civilians to be evacuated to government-run shelters and also for aid rations to be delivered to people inside the city, who are reluctant to leave.

Amos extended her sympathies to people who were injured in fighting and commended the courage and tenacity of the UN Humanitarian Coordinator and other UN and Red Crescent aid workers who entered the old city of Homs to try and deliver critical aid.

Describing the attack as a "stark reminder of the dangers that civilians and aid workers face every day across Syria," Amos called on "those engaged in this brutal conflict to respect the humanitarian pause, ensure the protection of civilians and facilitate the safe delivery of aid."

"The United Nations and our humanitarian partners will not be deterred from doing the best we can to bring aid to those needing our help," she said.

A day earlier, a total of 83 women, children and elderly civilians were evacuated in the first batch and many more are to leave within the next few days. About 2,500 people are believed to be trapped in the rebel-held old city, part of which have been under government troops' siege since June 2012.


Editor: Fu Peng
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