Syria a ‘Humanitarian Catastrophe’

    A young Syrian boy holds a bag as he collects plastic and metal items in a garbage dump in the northern Syrian city of Aleppo on April 17, 2013. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov criticised the Friends of Syria grouping of Western and Arab countries opposed to the rule of President Bashar al-Assad as negative for dialogue. AFP PHOTO / DIMITAR DILKOFF        (Photo credit should read DIMITAR DILKOFF/AFP/Getty Images)

    Dump in Aleppo on April 17. (Dimitar Dilkoff/AFP/Getty)

    The situation in Syria has officially become a “humanitarian catastrophe,” United Nations aid chief Valerie Amos declared Thursday night, as 22 million Syrians have been displaced within their own country and 1.3 million more have fled to other Middle Eastern and North African states. “I do not have an answer for those Syrians I have spoken to who asked me why the world has abandoned them,” Amos said. The United Nations deliberations over how best to handle the conflict remain at a standstill. Russia and China—allies of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad—continue to use their veto power to shoot down any attempts to condemn or sanction Assad’s government. Meanwhile, more than 70,000 people have died since Assad first turned his forces on his rebelling citizens.

    Read it at Reuters