Oxfam calls for political solution to be prioritised in Syria/Turkey conflict

Oxfam calls for political solution to be prioritised in Syria/Turkey conflict

There is no military solution to the situation in Syria and the best way to protect civilians is an immediate cessation of hostilities, Oxfam said.

The aid agency, which has been providing support to conflict-affected communities throughout the war and is closely monitoring the evolving situation, urged all parties to focus their efforts on a political solution.

“All sides must ensure every measure is taken to protect civilians and facilitate safe, unhindered humanitarian access to people in desperate need of relief wherever they are,” said Colm Byrne, humanitarian manager with Oxfam Ireland.

Many thousands of families caught up in the fighting in the north east of Syria are being forced to flee in the sixth day of conflict, while the media is reporting that more than 50 civilians have lost their lives*. Oxfam, calling for international humanitarian law to be upheld, said civilians are never legitimate targets in any conflict.

New damage to water systems in north-east Syria is reducing amount of available water in major population centres and is likely to impact civilians forced to flee their homes due to conflict, Oxfam warned. The UN says up to 160,000 civilians are now on the move and it expects the number to rise.

As another harsh winter approaches and the conflict in the north east of Syria escalates, displaced people will be in desperate need of food, clean water, clothing, warm blankets, stoves and fuel. Oxfam is on the ground in Syria, already helping over one million people with aid including water, cash and essential clothing items.
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Oxfam Ireland’s Humanitarian Manager Colm Byrne, recently returned from Syria, is available for interview.
For more information please contact: Phillip Graham on 00 44 (0) 7841 102535 / phillip.graham@oxfam.org


Media reports of more than 50 civilians killed: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-50039106

Oxfam Ireland has launched an emergency appeal for public donations for Syria. People can donate online via www.oxfamireland.org/syria-appeal, or through Oxfam Ireland’s network of 47 retail shops across the island. To find the Oxfam shop nearest to you, visit  www.oxfamireland.org/shops

In 2018/19, Oxfam in Syria helped over 1.2 million people with aid including clean water, cash, essential clothing items, and support to help make a living and grow nutritious food. In Lebanon and Jordan, Oxfam has to date helped some 300,000 people affected by the Syria crisis. •

Before this latest escalation in conflict 12 million people in Syria needed humanitarian aid and 300,000 have already lost their lives. • According to the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), there are at least 1,650,000 people in need of humanitarian assistance in north-east Syria

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