AMMAN, Jordan - A watchdog group says March was the most deadly month in Syria since the start of fighting there two years ago. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an organisation opposed to Syrian President Assad but most frequently quoted on the numbers of Syrians killed, says at least 6,000 people were killed in Syria last month and that more than a third of them were civilians. As of February, the United Nations said close to 70,000 Syrians had died since the start of what is now deemed a civil war.
Violence against Syrians has continued to escalate over the past few weeks, with more than 100 people killed in Houla according to the U.N., including 34 women and 49 children. The IRC continues to support displaced Syrian women and families in Jordan. Learn more about our work below from Asmaa Donahue, a technical advisor with the IRC’s Women’s Protection and Empowerment Team.
Article by Asmaa Donahue, Photography Ned Colt/The IRC
Syrian citizens continue to flee their homes and villages to escape a surge of violence that began earlier this week with the brutal killings of more than 100 people in Houla, many of them women and children.
The number of internally displaced people in Syria has more than doubled to 500,000 since the beginning of the April cease fire, according to the UN. Tens of thousands more have fled to neighbouring countries including Jordan, Lebanon, and Turkey with some 4,800 refugees registering with UN regional centres in the last week alone.
Across the globe, women and girls face unspeakable violence. Yet thousands of people worldwide are fighting every day for a safer world for women. In the Wake Up Call, a new video series, the IRC features those individuals working to put an end to violence against women.
The IRC has launched a two-year programme in Jordan that will train local aid workers to respond to violence against women, predominantly Iraqi refugees. The programme, which is supported by the United Nations Development Fund for Women, UNIFEM, will also help a local aid organisation, the Jordan River Foundation, establish a case management centre in the eastern part of the capital, Amman, home to the most Iraqi refugees. At the centre, Iraqi and Jordanian women will receive counselling and referrals to specialised medical, legal and psychosocial service providers.
The International Rescue Committee is working with partners to deliver urgently needed supplies to hospitals and other centres providing humanitarian aid to civilians in Gaza. With IRC funds, the Jordan River Foundation will be procuring desperately needed drugs, medical equipment and other vital items that are in short supply in Gaza as the humanitarian crisis worsens. Meanwhile, the IRC is dispatching emergency aid specialists to the Palestinian Territories this week with a view toward expanding relief activities in the area.