BAB AL-HAWA, Syria: Available funding and new border crossings were still not enough to help quake-hit citizens in Syria’s battered northwest, the head of the WHO said on Wednesday (Mar 1), adding he was “disturbed and heartbroken” by a visit to the rebel-held region.
World Health Organization chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus was speaking to reporters after visiting a hospital in the area, where more than 4,000 people have died as a result of last month’s devastating earthquake.
Following the quake, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad allowed the opening of two more crossings with Türkiye, bringing the total to three, to allow aid into the region held by his armed opponents.
However, more access – and funding – were still needed, Ghebreyesus said.
“I don’t think the existing, the three, will be enough. Any available access should be used,” he told reporters in Syria.
He said he did not discuss with local authorities the possibility of aid coming in across front lines from government-held zones. Other UN agencies and international aid groups have criticised hardline rebels for rejecting such deliveries.