Syria: Sick and wounded trapped in Deir Azzour
Paris, 12 December 2012 — Tens of thousands of people, many of them wounded, are trapped in the city of Deir Azzour, eastern Syria, due to intense fighting and aerial bombardments. Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) calls for the sick and wounded to be evacuated to safer locations and for international medical teams to be given official authorisation to provide impartial assistance to all those who need it.
“Deir Azzour currently has just one makeshift hospital with only four doctors working there,” said MSF coordinator Patrick Wieland, who has just returned from Syria. "The doctors are completely exhausted after six months of working in a combat zone. But they refuse to leave the city and are continuing to treat the wounded around the clock.”
Despite support from a Syrian doctors’ organisation, medical supplies are almost impossible to get hold of, and aerial bombardments and sniper fire make evacuating patients by stretcher extremely difficult.
An MSF team unofficially visited Deir Azzour governorate in late November to evaluate the needs in this isolated region ravaged by the war.
It was too dangerous to enter the city of
MSF visited several public and private hospitals within a 50-km radius of the city of
The health workers who have remained in the area are doing their best with minimal resources. The health system is being targeted, and medical supplies, including drugs and blood products, are running out, while the number of wounded continues to increase.
Essential medical supplies cannot be obtained from
As winter approaches, many of those who fled the city of
MSF calls for the evacuation of the wounded and sick from the city of
Despite the scale of humanitarian needs in the area, the Syrian authorities have not authorised the deployment of international impartial medical assistance.
Nonetheless, MSF is doing everything possible to increase its presence and its assistance, in collaboration with networks of Syrian doctors, in Deir Azzour governorate and elsewhere in the country.
MSF teams are working in three hospitals located in northern and northwestern