10/03/2013, 00.00
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UN appeals : 'Food needed for over 10 million Syrians '

About 50 % of the population in need of help . An "unprecedented tragedy " . UN urges Damascus for greater freedom of movement throughout the territory. Moscow counters, but does not object. In the north the clash between Free Syrian Army and jihadists intensifies.

Damascus ( AsiaNews / Agencies) - By the end of the year at least 10 million Syrians will need humanitarian support . With more than 2 million refugees assessed by UNHCR and 16.5 billion dollars in property damage calculated by the Interior Ministry in Damascus, the United Nations estimates that, as early as next January, 50% of the population will not be able to provide for itself. "It is an unprecedented catastrophe - says Gary Quinaln , Ambassador of Australia to the organization - the war in Syria produces a refugee every 15 seconds."

Faced with this "humanitarian tragedy " , the Security Council has called on the Syrian authorities to take "timely measures" , demanding it allow access to UN convoys across borders of neighboring countries . " If this measure were to be approved, we would be able to reach 2 million people more - says Valerie Amos , head of humanitarian operations - people who are located in areas of the country that have been isolated for months ."

Moscow - Assad's main ally - immediately expressed its disapproval frightened by the possibility that this could benefit the rebels. The Russian president , Vladimir Putin, however, reiterated his satisfaction with the agreement reached with Washington on the dismantling of Syria's chemical weapons, and stated that " a coordinated effort can help avoid the use of force and increase in violence , in a country that has suffered for a long time. "

Meanwhile, in northern Syria and Aleppo - where schools have reopened after over a year - clashes between the Free Syrian Army ( FSA) and jihadi militants are intensifying, to the benefit of the latter. In Aazaz , local sources report that " the fighters of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant took possession of strategic points , cutting the direct link to the Turkish border ." This creates problems for the refugees , fleeing toward the northwest , and for the soldiers of the FSA , trained in Turkey.


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