On the instructions of the Russian government, the mission is being fulfilled together with the Foreign Ministry.
According to the Emergency Situations Ministry, the first consignment of humanitarian aid consists of most necessary products. In all, 80 tons of cargo was sent to Damascus, say the director of the Ministry’s International Department, Yuri Brazhnikov.
“Two IL-76 planes carried frame tents and everything necessary for living in them, including blankets as well as food – canned food, baby food and sugar. The aid was delivered to meet Syria’s requests. All these items are necessary under the conditions of the ongoing conflict. This is one of the first acts, which are being carried out together with those organized by the International Committee of the Red Cross. The Syrian Red Crescent organization, which is well aware of the situation in several regions of the country, is receiving the aid and distributing it, says Yuri Brazhnikov.
Russia’s Emergency Situations Ministry is ready to send another consignment of aid to Syria, if Damascus makes a request, says Yuri Brazhnikov.
“We are ready to respond if Syria makes new requests, and will act proceeding from the possibilities and the situation. In this case, we will be guided by the Russian Foreign Ministry’s recommendations, of course,” Yuri Brazhnikov said.
On the 10th of March, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and his counterparts from the Arab League adopted a plan to stabilize the situation in Syria. The plan provides for putting an end to hostilities by both sides and delivering humanitarian aid freely. On the eve, the head of UN Humanitarian Mission Valery Amos demanded that the Syrian authorities assure free access to humanitarian aid for people, especially in the regions that were severely affected by fighting. However, the problem here is not the action of the Syrian authorities, says an expert in Oriental Studies, former Russian ambassador to Lebanon, Alexei Podtserob. According to him, the Syrian authorities cannot bear responsibility for the action of militants.
“Really, the humanitarian situation in several regions where heavy fighting was going on, especially in Homs, is critical. But, I would like to emphasize that militants, who stirred up an armed insurrection against the government, are blamed for this situation. They drove people from their houses, and these people have become internally displaced persons. Russia’s decision to send humanitarian aid to Syria is a well-timed and correct step. Hopefully, other countries will follow in Russia’s footstep,” Alexei Podtserob said.
Earlier, China expressed desire to send humanitarian aid to Syria. On Monday, the Syrian authorities allowed the delivery of humanitarian cargo from the Organization of Islamic Cooperation. According to UN reports, the death toll in Syria has reached up to 7,500 people, including military and civilians.