Hunger ’emergency’ in Syria’s Idlib

syria refugees

Nearly a year after the height of a devastating government offensive that forced a million people from their homes in Syria’s rebel-held northwest, doctors and aid workers are warning that the region’s civilians, especially young children, face a new threat: rising hunger. In Idlib province, the situation is worsened by mass displacement and a population already in dire need after years in the crosshairs of conflict—putting an estimated four million people, including 1.5 million in camps, at particular risk of hunger and malnourishment.

But Idlib and the surrounding areas—which have been calmer since the Russia-backed government assault was halted with a March ceasefire—are not the only part of Syria where hunger is a concern. Food prices have been rising across the country, alongside the economic impacts of COVID-19 and the freefall of the Syrian pound that are plunging an ever-increasing number of people into poverty. Last month, government-subsidised bakeries began shutting down in parts of the country controlled by President Bashar al-Assad, amidst a shortage of wheat.

Condensed from The New Humanitarian, Oct. 28

Photo: UNICEF via UN News