Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Airstrike Hits Medics in Syria as UN Moves to Resume Aid

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Airstrike Hits Medics in Syria as UN Moves to Resume Aid

Article excerpt

BEIRUT * An airstrike in northern Syria killed four medics responding to an earlier bombing raid, a relief group said Wednesday, as the U.N. announced it would resume aid deliveries suspended after an attack on a convoy two days ago that killed 20 people.

The escalation of violence against humanitarian workers has all but destroyed a cease-fire that took effect on Sept. 12 and has stoked tensions between the truce's architects, the U.S. and Russia, which have traded blame for running it into the ground.

The U.N said convoys to priority areas would be resumed, with deliveries planned as early as Thursday. "Our obligation to civilians on all sides is to go where and when we can with relief," said Jan Egeland, a senior U.N. humanitarian official focused on Syria. "We hope to resume convoys tomorrow and Friday but still work on security guarantees."

But air raids continued in other parts of Syria, with activists reporting at least 23 civilians killed in the besieged parts of Aleppo city and the nearby rebel-held Idlib province.

The attack that killed the medics took place shortly after they arrived at the scene of an airstrike in the rebel-held town of Khan Touman on Tuesday. As the medics deployed, planes circled around and struck the area again, Dr. Oubaida Al Moufti, vice president of the International Union of Medical Care and Relief Organizations, said. Al-Moufti initially said that five medics were killed. The group later said two nurses and two ambulance drivers were killed, while a third nurse remains in critical condition.

Syrian government forces have been accused of carrying out "double tap" attacks throughout the 5- year war, placing paramedics and rescue workers in peril.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said nine militants, some of them belonging to the Fatah al-Sham Front, an al- Qaida-linked group previously known as the Nusra Front, were also killed in the "double tap" attack. …

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