5 million people in Damascus have been without water for over 30 days. News has been sparse from the Wadi Barada area as they are under siege and heavy attacks, but there is hardly any communication going out from the area. The people in the area have been cut off of all outside communication and have no access to basic necessities such as food, water and medical care. A source had to walk 8.5 miles just to be able to communicate with UOSSM representatives about the situation in the area.
The final evacuees from Aleppo came in throughout the day on December 21. At approximately 4:30 a.m. Damascus time, two buses and three emergency vehicles came in, another convoy of 20 buses came at 6 p.m. Damascus time. At between 6:30 and 7:30 p.m. Damascus time approximately 120 civilian vehicles came in and at 8p.m. another convoy of 500 civilian vehicles came in carrying approximately 7000 people.
On December 22, private vehicles kept coming to the evacuation point through noon, in the afternoon 10 buses came in with and 750 more people came in private vehicles. At 10 p.m. the last 3 buses came. Very few wounded patients came in.
Through the teamwork of UOSSM along with several other NGOs over 35,000 people were safely evacuated from the besieged area of Aleppo, despite the hardships and delays.
A major snow storm blanketed the Aleppo area, further complicating the evacuation process of the remaining civilians in besieged Aleppo. Preliminary reports suggest almost 30,000 have been evacuated, as 20 buses and approximately 200 civilian cars were evacuated today. There has been major difficulties sending the wounded patients to nearby facilities as many roads are closed by the snow storm.
Among the thousands of civilians that were evacuated today was Bana Alabed, the young seven year old who gained a huge following after she and her mother started tweeting about their situation in besieged eastern Aleppo. Bana, along with her mother and two siblings were protected and accompanied by UOSSM staff until moved to a safe, undisclosed location.
Approximately 6000-6500 were evacuated today in a total of 109 buses, among the people were approximately 75-100 wounded and sick patients.
Over 14 NGOs and Emergency Ambulance Systems have been involved in the evacuation of besieged Eastern Aleppo. UOSSM was among those NGOs, which deployed 26 ambulances, and over 195 UOSSM staff and volunteers in the evacuation process, and UOSSM Safety and Security Director, along with other assistants, was assigned as the focal point for the coordination of evacuation to ensure proper triage of patients to designated hospitals and evacuation of people to safety sites.Read more
At least 300 evacuees reached the evacuation point late Sunday night, after being held at a checkpoint for at least nine hours. The evacuees were stuck in the buses with no food, water, blankets, and were not allowed to leave the buses to use the restroom. Many children were on the bus and UOSSM's Safety and Security Director spoke with several of the children who look exhausted, hungry and cold from the long ordeal.
Today, UOSSM staff waited for hours at the receiving point for the Aleppo evacuees to no avail, the workers started to feel uneasy as the expected arrival was constantly delayed, until finally they got confirmation that the process and the cease fire was over. Eyewitnesses testified that as they were on route they were stopped at a checkpoint only to find armed militias waiting for them. The Red Cross and Red Crescent were ordered to leave and the militias along with tanks and army vehicles encircled the convoy. They ordered all men to come out, as they were stripped and insulted. Four were killed and others were apprehended, and many of the belongings of the people were stolen. Finally after a very tense situation they convoy was ordered to go back to the besieged area of Aleppo. UOSSM staff and other organizations were informed that the evacuations would not happen today.
UOSSM staff were hard at work today coordinating and participating in the evacuation process of the people of Aleppo. The coordination efforts were led by Dr. Ahmad Dbis- UOSSM Security and Safety Director, Dr. Deya Al Zamel COO, the director of an UOSSM hospital, and Dr. Tamman Lodami, North Regional Director of Operations. There have been a total of five groups of people, with approximately 5000 evacuated civilians so far. There was a total of 127 ambulances from 7 other organizations. UOSSM provided 26 ambulances of which 18 are fully equipped for critical condition cases. Patients were transported to area hospitals depending on their condition.
42 children in an orphanage in the Salah Al Din area are underground panicking, crying, and shouting out of fear, and are pleading with the UN and international community to rescue and evacuate them out of the area as the area has come under fierce bombardment with all types of shelling following a failed ceasefire and evacuation agreement.
It has been a terrible and brutal day in Aleppo as any efforts to evacuate civilians failed. There are hundreds of patients who are in desperate need of medical attention, but unfortunately the very short-lived ceasefire came to a halt, and the small besieged area of Aleppo, with approximately 80,000 people, once again the target of a fierce bombardment. A dentist "Suleiman" from inside the city sent out a message saying, "The situation has deteriorated significantly, we are experiencing extreme shelling and bombardment. If the situation remains the same I believe there will be a true massacre. We are in clear and present danger!"
#Aleppo #Stand4Aleppo #Pray4Aleppo