DUBLIN/AMMAN, 27 July 2016 – Four hospitals in eastern Aleppo city – al-Dakkak, al-Bayan, al-Hakim and al-Zahraa – and a blood blank were reportedly hit several times on 23 and 24 July disrupting key life-saving health services for up to 300,000 civilians.
According to reports, a two-day-old baby died in his incubator due to interruptions to the oxygen supply as a result of air strikes on al-Hakim. This UNICEF-supported paediatric hospital, the only one in the city, was reportedly hit twice in less than 12 hours.
All hospitals hit over the 48-hour-period are in the al-Shaar neighbourhood, a location with several health facilities in close vicinity to one another. These hospitals make up half of all health facilities operating in the area.
Health facilities in Syria are being attacked with alarming ferocity. According to WHO estimates, since the beginning of the year, there have been more than 40 attacks on health facilities in Syria. It is estimated that nearly 60% of public hospitals in the country have closed or are only partially functional.
Attacks on health facilities are a blatant violation of international humanitarian law and can amount to war crimes. Health facilities must never be attacked or damaged, and health workers should be allowed to provide medical treatment and services to all people in need wherever they are inside Syria.
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