Children with wrinkled faces and arms like sticks are going hungry because President Bashar Assad's forces, supported by Russia and Iran, are blocking trucks filled with humanitarian relief.


BEIRUT (AP) — At the doors of the Syrian capital, children with wrinkled faces and arms like sticks are going hungry because President Bashar Assad’s forces, supported by Russia and Iran, are blocking trucks filled with humanitarian relief.

A picture taken on October 25, 2017, shows Hala, a two-year-old girl suffering from the lack of medical care and adequate nourishment, at her home in the rebel-held town of Saqba, in Eastern Ghouta.
Aid agencies warn the situation is worsening, despite an international agreement to implement a “de-escalation zone” in the area, which has decreased violence but led to no new access for food, medicine and humanitarian aid. (PHOTO: ABDULMONAM EASSA/AFP/Getty Images)

As the government and its opponents wrap up another fruitless round of talks in Geneva, humanitarian officials warn that conditions outside Damascus have reached crisis levels, with the government maintaining a siege on the eastern Ghouta suburbs that has trapped close to 400,000 people without enough food, fuel or medicine for the winter.

They say patients with empty stomachs and kidney failure are dying in their beds waiting for evacuation to hospitals just minutes away.

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