Syrian Civilians Deliver Aid Through Informal Networks
The ongoing uprising in Syria entered into its 15 month, and the fight between the anti-government rebels and the President Bashar al Assad’s regime, has killed more than 12,000 people, according to the UN. Today, an additional 15 civilians and one rebel fighter were murdered as the regime cracked down on the eastern province of Deir Ezzor and in Damascus
An article in the New York Times explores the ‘strategy’ developed by the Syrians to resist the “government’s effort to divide and conquer, whether on sectarian, ethnic, class or geographical lines.” The government has targeted health professional or continuously warned of the threat of Islamist militants hijacking the uprising in order to quell the upheaval. However, hundreds have joined secret networks in order to provide supplies and money to victims of violence. Meanwhile, the UN continues the attempt to negotiate with the Syrian government in order to gain entrance into areas in desperate need of humanitarian aid.
In an interview with CNN journalist Anderson Cooper, Sen John McCain (R-Ar) expressed discontent with the current US administration for not handling the Syrian crisis, ‘Where is the President of the United States?” said McCain calling for providing weapons to the opposition “to defend themselves in their freedom.” McCain added that it was “shameful not to act.”
In a communique, the Islamist group al-Nusra front denied involvement in last Thursday’s suicide bombing that killed 55 civilians in Damascus, saying that the video showing the group claiming responsibility was fraud. BBC observed that “the authenticity was extremely difficult to verify.”
However, Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said “Al Qaeda stands behind the terror attacks in Syria.”
The Syrian regime targets medical workers and injured civilians, reported the NGO Doctors Without Borders (DWB). Dounia Dekhili, an official from DWB said, “We are in a very particular situation in Syria: no impartial humanitarian aid can be brought in, and the harassment of the wounded and doctors is part of the regime’s police strategy.” DWB, which is not authorized to work in Syria, sent teams into the country secretly. They reached the restive areas of Homs and Idlib and have reported that medical workers were missing whereas the NGO discovered that the regime does provide medical care to its supporters.
Meanwhile, Syrian election committee chairman Khalaf al-Izzaoui said that 51 percent of the eligible voters voted in the May 7 parliament elections. The opposition contested the credibility of these elections. There was no independent monitor of the electoral process.