Aleppo (Syria): The UN relief chief said in quake-hit Syria on Monday that as the UN relief efforts enter a humanitarian phase, the urgency is to cover such needs as shelter, food and schooling.
Martin Griffiths, UN under secretary-general for humanitarian affairs and emergency relief coordinator, said the plan now is to cover three months of humanitarian needs in Syria, Xinhua news agency reported.
“Now (in) the humanitarian phase, the urgency is providing shelter, it’s like social care, food, schooling and a sense of the future for these people. That’s our obligation,” he told reporters in the government-controlled northern Syrian city of Aleppo, following a tour to sites damaged by the February 6 earthquakes.
About the situation in the rebel-held areas in the northwestern province of Idlib, Griffiths said the UN would have aid moving to that region and that truckloads of relief supplies were also moving from Turkey to northwestern Syria.
He lauded the international search and rescue response to the earthquake as “unparalleled in history”, wishing to see “the same for the humanitarian needs”.
The United Nations had said on Friday that the earthquake in Syria had displaced 5.3 million people.
The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said on Monday that the death toll from quakes in rebel-held areas in northwestern Syria stood at 4,300, while 7,600 others were injured.
Meanwhile, the Syrian health ministry estimated that the earthquakes have killed 1,414 people and wounded 2,349 others in government-controlled areas.