A destroyed ambulance on the streets of the restive city of Homs following Syrian government bombardment (Shaam News Network/ May 2012)
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Hand in Hand For Syria’s appeal is underway to purchase and deliver ambulances into Syria.
According to various sources, including the United Nations, around 45,000 people have died in the conflict (Source: UN, December 2012). Some estimate this to be at least twice that amount, of whom about half were civilians. International organisations have also accused the government and government militia ('shabiha') of using civilians as human shields, and of intentionally targeting civilians.
Ambulance crews are mercilessly coming under fire to prevent them from transporting wounded victims to hospitals. Most recently, Khaled Khaffaji was the fifth member of the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) staff to be killed in the conflict, and the second to be killed in less than a month. He was shot in a clearly marked ambulance in the town of Deir al-Zor, the organisation said.
The brave Syrian doctors and nurses providing emergency aid and other medical relief are battling under extreme circumstances with total lack of security, indiscriminate attacks on ambulances and hospitals and a major shortage of basic medical equipment and supplies.
Medics say they have been targeted by Assad’s forces since the beginning of the uprising in March 2011. Doctors treating the injured say the Syrian regime is using more lethal weapons and targeting specific areas such as the spine and the brain to maximize damage, areas that can leave a lifelong disability. As a result, there have been many amputations.
Ambulances are the only means of access for seriously injured victims to get emergency treatment at field hospitals. In response to the worsening situation Hand in Hand for Syria is calling for more funds to get more ambulances on the streets. You can help alleviate the pain and suffering, you can help save more lives.
Decommissioned ambulances are bought from the NHS in the UK, they are serviced and repaired and then sent to Syria, normally filled with aid.
Each vehicle costs around £5000 to purchase and get into Syria.
Can you help?