The Last of Aleppo

Monday, the ongoing situation in Aleppo reached its lowest point yet as civilians, including women and children, were shot or burned to death in their homes and in the streets and bombing reached critical mass.

The Syria Civil Defence (The White Helmets), Kesh Malek, Independent Doctors Association, and Syrian American Medical Society wrote:

“We are calling on the international community to provide a safe passage out of Aleppo for the remaining ~100,000 people. We know that the UN has a plan to get us out across the four kilometres of Western Aleppo to safety: with a few dozen buses and lorries we could all be evacuated in twenty four hours. However, we need the international community to guarantee the safety of their workers and our own.”
 

Tuesday, Turkey and Russia were finally able to facilitate a ceasefire deal to allow the remaining people in Aleppo to move to safety. Two dozen buses arrived to transport the displaced, as well as the hundreds of injured. Only needing to travel approximately three hours to the Turkish border, or less than an hour to Idlib, we remained hopeful that this was the beginning of the end to this nightmare. Evacuations were set to begin at 5am local time the following morning for a ride that, in a peaceful country, is merely a morning commute but in Aleppo means the difference between life and impending death.

It’s now Wednesday and the people of Aleppo still have no means of escape and nowhere to hide. Although evacuations were set to begin at dawn, residents were unable to leave before shelling began again at approximately 10am. The fragile ceasefire appears to have been broken by parties not included in ceasefire talks and who are now making their own demands. The buses returned to their depots empty today.

Now, there are victims currently dead and dying in the streets and no one to help heal the wounded. They are trapped by violence in a one-square-mile enclave of the city. These crucial evacuations require infrastructure to move people quickly and safely, the secure entry of humanitarian aid workers to help the sick and wounded, and UN observers to report human rights violations.

This is a quickly evolving situation and because of the current siege and how dangerous it is there for journalists, it is difficult to verify facts. DGB has identified one thing you can do immediately to put pressure on the international community to enforce safe passage for the last people of Aleppo.

Call the State Department at 202-647-9572 and the Russian Embassy at 202-298-5700 and say “I am a concerned citizen of the world and I urge you to do anything and everything you can to facilitate the rescue of the remaining people in Aleppo.”

Do this now. Do this often. And please share widely.

Note: these numbers may be busy or have a full mailbox. This is a good thing, but we also encourage you to keep trying.

 

 

“Genocide is the responsibility of the entire world.”

Ann Clwyd