UNHCR strongly condemns latest attack on civilians in northeastern Syria
UNHCR statement about the death of 40 individuals due to car bombs attacks in Abu Fas Checkpoint between Der ez Zor and Hassakeh governorates
UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency in Syria condemns in the strongest possible terms the multiple car bombs attack last Thursday, October 12th at the Abu Fas Checkpoint (located between Der ez Zor and Hassakeh governorates).
An estimated 40 individuals were killed and around 100 others were injured in this brutal attack that targeted the checkpoint when around 5000 internally displaced civilians fleeing the violence in Der ez Zor had gathered at the checkpoint trying to cross to safety. The attack was also followed by gunshots which caused more panic as people ran for their lives.
The injured were transferred to Hassakeh National Hospital, and the rest were referred to the private hospitals in Hassakeh and Qamishli. Some others were offered first aid at nearby clinics and were released shortly after. It is noted that recent violence and repeated explosive bombing attacks in several locations around Syria have caused fatalities and alarming levels of human suffering.
During the past two days, UNHCR managed to accommodate over 4,000 individuals that were gathered at the checkpoint to Al Hol Camp, where staff members of UNHCR and other partners were deployed for an emergency response to affected people and offered first aid.
UNHCR teams have helped these people transport their luggage, made sure all families remained together and provided them with hot meals and water and psychological first-aid treatment where needed.
“We must provide protection and humanitarian assistance that we can in spaces of safety”
In addition to the first response, UNHCR with partners provide at camp locations water, nonfood items package, shelter, sanitation services, in addition to food rations provided by WFP.
“Targeting civilians is cruel and unimaginable. Civilians in Syria have suffered inconceivable difficulties, including risky excruciating journeys and displacement, separation from family members, looting, injury, death and destruction and deep trauma. Parties to the conflict must not target civilians and ensure their safe passage. We must provide protection and humanitarian assistance that we can in spaces of safety like camps in Al Hol, Mabrouka, Areesha and Ain Issa established for this purpose,” said Sajjad Malik, the UN Refugee Representative in Syria.
We will continue to provide vital humanitarian assistance in Syria and stand in solidarity with Syria’s people. Our thoughts and condolences are with the families of all those affected and we wish a speedy recovery to all those injured.
UNHCR reminds all parties to the conflict of their obligation of protecting civilians under the UN human rights law and the international humanitarian law and the need for safe passage for people trying to escape the fighting.