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Red Cross Denied Access To Baba Amr

Cara Palmer |
March 3, 2012 | 11:45 a.m. PST

Executive Producer

(FreedomHouse, Creative Commons)
(FreedomHouse, Creative Commons)
Syria has, for the second day, denied the International Red Cross access to Baba Amr, a district of Homs devastated by recent violence. Syrian officials stated that the reason for the access denial is that “there are mines and potential booby traps in Baba Amr that need to be cleared first,” the BBC reports.

According to the Huffington Post:

“Conditions in Baba Amr are believed to be dire, with extended power outages, shortages of food and water, and lack of medical care. Syrian government forces took control of the neighborhood Thursday after rebels fled the district under constant bombardment that activists said killed hundreds of people since early February.

“The Red Cross said the regime blocked its entry to Baba Amr on Friday, one day after the group received government permission to enter with a convoy of seven trucks carrying 15 tons of humanitarian aid including food, medical supplies and blankets.”

Baba Amr, a rebel stronghold, was attacked by Syrian forces, which claimed they were fighting “armed gangs” in the area. Revolts against President Bashar al-Assad’s regime have resulted in government crackdowns causing 7,500 deaths thus far.

According to the BBC, the Red Cross aid convoy “spent the night in Homs and is set to spend a second after being blocked from entering Baba Amr, despite having been initially given permission from the government.” Thousands of people are in need of assistance in the neighborhood.

The UK spokesman of the ICRC, Sean Maguire, stated: “Negotiations to gain access to the suburb continue. Our teams remain in Homs, ready to enter Baba Amr as soon as possible.” They have not given up, because “the needs on the ground are quite large and we need to get in quickly.”


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