Aid convoy delivers food in Syria's Eastern Ghouta


Doctors Without Borders said Friday that between February 18 and March 3 at least 1,005 people were killed and 4,829 wounded - or 71 killed and 344 wounded on average per day. The war monitor, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, on Friday gave a death toll of 940 civilians in the campaign.

The convoy entered during a brief lull but the bombardment and fighting resumed after the convoy entered Eastern Ghouta.

The Syrian rebel group Jaish al-Islam said Friday that it had agreed to evacuate Nusra Front militants being held in its prisons in besieged Eastern Ghouta to rebel-held Idlib province.

"While the convoy was underway, shelling occurred in the proximity of operations, despite prior assurances of safety from all parties", he said.

"We were taken aback by the fighting that broke out despite guarantees from the parties involved in this conflict that humanitarians could enter Douma, in eastern Ghouta", said ICRC regional director Robert Mardini.

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Humanitarian aid convoys left the Syria's Eastern Ghouta area on Friday afternoon after delivering the aid shipment, the Red Cross spokesperson told Xinhua.

ICRC said it delivered along with the United Nations and the Syrian Arab Red Crescent 2,400 food parcels that can sustain 12,000 people for one month, as well as 3,248 wheat flour bags. "But the losers are plain to see - they are the people of Syria".

For President Bashar al-Assad, it would mark a victory as he builds on the military momentum created by Russia's 2015 entry into the war, which has restored his rule over swathes of Syria. In many cases, rebel enclaves have surrendered in deals that allowed them and their families, along with civilians who did not wish to come back under Assad's rule, to depart for other opposition areas.

Filippo Grandi, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, said yesterday aid agencies in Syria often struggled to access besieged areas even with permission from political leaders. 'Recent attempts to justify indiscriminate and brutal attacks against thousands of civilians are legally and morally unacceptable, ' al-Hussein said, as he referred to the mass killings of civilians while supposedly targeting combatants.

The terror of the bombardment and the increasingly unbearable living conditions may push people to fearless the fighting and flee, according to one resident of Douma.