Regime-inflicted famine in Madaya continues to claim victims

Jan 05, 2016

Forty thousand people living in the Syrian town of Madaya in Damascus province are reportedly dying from starvation as the world watches in complicit silence, say activists.

The small town, located in the Qalamoun mountain range 40km south of Damascus in an area adjacent to the Lebanese border, has been besieged since July 2015 by Assad's forces, backed by mercenaries from the Tehran-backed Hezbollah militia, who continue to prevent any food or humanitarian aid from reaching residents. .

Photos and video footage from the town which were published on Monday show scenes reminiscent of Nazi concentration camps, with skeletal residents recounting how they are now reduced to eating leaves from plants, as well as insects, and even cats simply to stay alive, after their food supplies ran out complete.

On its Facebook page, along with horrifying photographs showing the starving residents of the town, the humanitarian aid group Hand in Hand for Syria stated:

"Most of the photos coming out of the small town of Madaya are too graphic to share. Shocking images depict the true face of human desperation; people reduced to mere skeletons – with sunken eyes and protruding rib-cages, waiting for death to claim their name next.

For the past 6 months, the people of Madaya have been living under siege. Crops and food supplies have dwindled, leaving nothing but desperation behind. The remaining food in the town has become so expensive that most people simply cannot afford to buy food to eat.

They started by boiling crops. When the crops finished, they would boil grass and plants…then insects. When the malnutrition became unbearable, people began to resort to eating cats.

To date, starvation has claimed the lives of more than 50 people in the town. Malnutrition is rife, and with the cold winter weather starting to set in, thousands of people are at an increased risk of developing hypothermia."

Photo: One of the residents of Madaya who starved to death in the ongoing manmade famine inflicted by the Assad regime, assisted by Hezbollah forces, Tuesday January 5, 2016