Marking The 7th Anniversary Of The Syrian Civil War

What began as protests in Damascus and Aleppo against the imprisonment of teenage activists in 2011, has evolved into one of the most pressing humanitarian emergencies of our time.

Today marks the 7th anniversary of the Syrian civil war

Doctors of the World has been active in Syria since the beginning of the war with the aim of strengthening the healthcare system that has been debilitated by the conflict.

Our teams, in partnership with local partners such as the Syrian Arab Red Crescent and UOSSM, have worked to provide primary health care and mental health support to communities in areas such as Idlib, Aleppo, Dara’a and rural Damascus.

Syrian children gather around a fire early in the morning in a refugee camp at Suruc, Turkey. AFP PHOTO / BULENT KILIC

According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a UK-based monitoring group, there have been an estimated 400,000 people killed during the conflict in Syria. Roughly 50,000 of these deaths are people who are missing or presumed dead.

6.6 million people have been internally displaced around the country due to fighting and insecurity. Furthermore, an estimated 5.5 million people have fled the country as refugees to neighboring countries such as Turkey and Lebanon, creating the largest global refugee crisis since the Second World War.

Medical facilities such as hospitals and health clinics, where people go to seek treatment, have also been routinely bombed and destroyed

The destruction of medical facilities has greatly reduced the Syrian people’s access to medical care, making the work of Doctors of the World and other humanitarian organizations on the ground especially vital. There are currently 11.3 million Syrians within Syria in need of urgent humanitarian care.

In addition to providing medical care on the ground, our organization has continued to call for the intervention of the international community on behalf of the Syrian people to stop the killing of innocent civilians, the targeting of civilian areas, and the use of chemical weapons.

The continued horrors of the civil war, such as the ongoing siege in Eastern Ghouta, mean that conditions across Syria today remain dire. On the Syrian civil war’s 7th anniversary, we are calling on all actors involved to abide by international law, to uphold declared ceasefires, and to end the targeting of civilians and health facilities.