New Syrian citizens say their compatriots are starving

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The new citizens of Londonderry recently arrived from Syria have told Foyle MP Mark Durkan that their countrymen and women are starving and they don’t understand how those who can mobilise for war can’t seem to mobilise for vital humanitarian aid.

Mr Durkan said his new constituents expressed their frustrations during a meeting with him in the city on Sunday, June 5.

He raised the matter on the floor of the House of Commons in Westminster yesterday, (Thursday, June 9).

“The vexed complexities...and the acute sensitivity of current UN efforts, are understood by the Syrian refugees whom I met in my constituency on Sunday, and they explained the dire plight of their starving compatriots,” said Mr Durkan.

“Their basic question to me as a Member of the House is this: why can powers not marshal the capacity and resolve to supply the means of life, given that we have shown that we can deploy the means of death?” he asked.

Conservative MP and Minister for Europe replied: “One must take into account the military realities on the ground.

“We are talking about a regime in Syria that is besieging most of the communities whose plight we are discussing.

“The regime has formidable air defences of its own, and Russia has deployed its own air defence measures inside Syrian territory.

“For that reason, we believe that the safest and most effective means of providing humanitarian access would still be for the ​UN to agree terms under which that aid can be delivered.

“If that proves not to work, we must return to this issue, as I have indicated.”