A new convoy carrying desperately needed food aid entered the rebel enclave of Eastern Ghouta near Syria’s capital on Thursday, the International Committee of the Red Cross said in a statement. “The convoy entered Ghouta and is going to Douma now,” ICRC’s communication coordinator Pawel Krzysiek said. Douma is the largest town in Ghouta, the opposition’s dwindling enclave on the outskirts of the capital Damascus and the target of a blistering government assault for the past month.
Even before the latest onslaught, Ghouta has been suffering a five-year government siege that has made food and medical supplies scarce. Thursday’s convoy of 25 trucks was carrying food parcels and flour bags for more than 26,000 people, according to Krzysiek. “This is just a little of what these families need,” the ICRC said.
It was the third delivery of aid to reach Douma in 10 days. A convoy last week was delivered in two parts, after a first attempt on March 5 was cut short due to heavy shelling. Aid deliveries, carried out jointly by the ICRC, Syrian Arab Red Crescent, and the United Nations, need permission from all warring sides in Ghouta.