October 10, 2018
Today Is World Mental Health Day
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.
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.
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.