Madaya’s Besieged Residents Send Message to UN via Opposition Delegation to Geneva Talks

The opposition’s negotiation delegation to Geneva talks conveyed a message from the local council in the besieged town of Madaya in Rural Damascus to the UN envoy to Syria Satffan de Mistura expressing the grievances of the people of Madaya.

In a teleconference between members of council and members of the opposition’s High Negotiation Committee (HNC) on Monday, the conferees stressed the need for the HNC to press the United Nations to enforce its resolutions on Syria, most importantly the delivery of humanitarian aid to besieged towns and cities, the lifting of the sieges, and the release of detainees.

Members of the local council pointed to the severe shortages of food and medical supplies in the town, leading to diseases among the civilians trapped inside such as kidney failure and kwashiorkor, a form of severe protein–energy malnutrition. An estimated 350 people have developed this disease, which is caused by insufficient intake of protein and the food being limited to dry beans.

The town of Madaya is home to about 40,000 people who suffer a crippling siege by regime forces and the Hezbollah militias. At least 280 people have died since the beginning of the siege nearly three years ago. Moreover, 12 people have been killed in attacks by regime forces and the Hezbollah militias or died due to lack of medical supplies since the truce took effect in December 29, 2016. Around 200 more have been injured.

During the teleconference, the HNC spokesman Salem Meslet assured members of the council that their message to the United Nations will be delivered, stressing that the HNC delegation is in Geneva to discuss political transition needed to restore stability and security to all parts of Syria.

The mission of the opposition’s negotiating team is to defend the demands of the Syrian people and help achieve their aspirations, Meslet said.

(Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department / 28.02.2017)

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