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Outside the hospital. Photos: Human Appeal

Narrow escape for Human Appeal Hospital in Syria

Human Appeal has just revealed that the hospital it operates in Aleppo has narrowly escaped disaster last Sunday. As an air strike took place, a bomb dropped just yards away from the hospital’s side entrance. It left a crater two metres long and five metres deep, but very fortunately there were no casualties.  After the air strike, patients were evacuated to another hospital and staff were also evacuated.

The Human Appeal hospital is a maternity and paediatric hospital which serves 250,000 people. Since it was opened in November 2014, it has treated over 8,000 children and 7,600 women – and 3,500 babies have been born on the premises.

Inside the hospital

Inside the hospital

Othman Moqbel, CEO of Human Appeal, responded to the incident, saying:
“We call on all military actors in the Syrian conflict to respect international law. A hospital is not a legitimate military target. In our hospital we have children, babies and pregnant women. A hospital full of vulnerable women and children is no threat to anyone. Who would gain from this being destroyed? This hospital is here to save lives and shepherd new life into the world: this air strike was a few feet away from destroying life.
“We are calling on all parties to condemn this action. NGOs like ourselves operate in Syria to help people in desperate need. When our hospitals are targeted it makes our jobs infinitely more difficult. Aid workers and hospitals need more protection from the terror ripping Syria apart.”

Human Appeal’s call for support for people trapped in Aleppo came just after Russia had suggested a 48 hour ceasefire should be called to allow aid to be taken into the city. The proposal has been welcomed by the UN, but not yet implemented.

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