Starvation Kills Civilians in Al Yarmouk Camp

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Enab Baladi Issue # 97 – Sun, Dec. 29, 2013

الموت من الجوع في مخيم اليرموك (1)Activists documented 6 deaths last week in Al Yarmouk Camp, in Damascus Suburbs, which has been under siege for 170 Days.

After almost six months of tight siege on the camp by Assad Forces backed by Popular Front for Liberation of Palestine lead by Ahmad Jibril, and by pro-Assad fighters of Fateh Al Intifada Movement, 50 thousand civilians are facing threat of death due to prolonged severe starvation as food supplies completely run out and relief organizations failed to deliver aids to the besieged families.

Activists were able to document five deaths last week, whereas dozens of dying people are still suffering and onthe brink of death.

Fajr Press Network released several videos showing the 18 victims of starvation since the beginning of the siege including Qasem Maghribi, the latest victim. 15-year-old Maghribi succumbed to starvation after two weeks of suffering without food amid futile attempts to save him by doctors at field hospitals inside the camp.

The Network also covered children’s activities hammering at empty plates and casseroles calling upon the whole world to help allowing food into the camp. It also published many appeals by activists sent to Human Rights Organizations calling for ending the siege.

Meanwhile, efforts to reach a truce agreement between a negotiation committee from citizens of the camp and representatives of Assad regime and the Popular Front are made, however, in vain so far.

As for the effects of the lengthy siege, it compelled people to eat whatever they come across; consequently, field hospitals have been receiving several poisoning cases due to consumption of expired, rotten food and the use of unhealthy ingredients. All4Syria website reported that a whole family was rushed into one of the field hospitals late Monday night as they were poisoned after having dessert prepared from an “unknown powder”.

Moreover, searching for eatable materials in waste containers and dumpsters became a common practice as besieged people are starving in streets. A video was also released by Fajr Press showing an orphan eating cardboards since he could not find anything else to eat, says the child.

The use of siege and starvation warfare by Assad regime is not limited to Yarmouk Camp; all rebelling areas have been under siege to push opposition fighters towards surrender or towards reaching a settlement that would assure the regime that the area will not constitute a threat, such as the recent settlement made in Muaddamiya Al Sham a few days ago.

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