[16 October 2017] The recent campaign to uproot ISIS in Raqqa and Dier Ezzor has made major strides tackling terrorism. But a widespread failure to protect civilians from indiscriminate attacks has led to massive internal displacement across eastern Syria and left countless civilians without proper access to food and medical care. In a new report, the Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) warns that without immediate action by the international community, 370,000 civilians across eastern Syria could soon be facing a humanitarian catastrophe.
“As the fighting in Raqqa and Deir Ezzor has ramped up, nearly 400,000 civilians have been forced to flee their homes. Many did not survive, losing their lives in the assault or as they attempted to flee”, says SNHR Chairperson Fadel Abdul Ghany. “Most internally displaced persons (IDPs) remain in IDP camps or makeshift tents, where conditions are miserable. For the few that have made the journey home, they have returned to find their homes looted and destroyed by regime-affiliates.”