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Sick Syrians suffer as aid lags

Thursday, Feb 07, 2013 - 01:31

Feb. 7 - More aid, better health care and improved shelters needed as the number of Syrian refugees arriving in Lebanon soars, a medical charity says. Sarah Sheffer reports.

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Syrian refugees in Lebanon's Bekaa Valley wait as aid workers distribute blankets. But in a recent report, Doctors Without Borders said medical aid and humanitarian assistance for the hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees there is inadequate. According to the report, many do not receive proper housing, enough aid and the necessary healthcare they need, in part due to lengthy registration delays. For many the situation is critical. (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) SYRIAN REFUGEE MAN, SAYING: "I have 10 children. We all live here and our situation is terrible. The rooms' ceilings have holes in them and there are constant water leaks and toilets flooding. We live in complete misery." (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) SYRIAN REFUGEE WOMAN, SAYING: "Look at this fireplace. Because of lack of wood, we end up using whatever we can to put in it for heat purposes. It is constantly raining and there are no jobs available. We are slowly dying. The smell caused by plastic burning has hurt our throats and breathing." Doctors Without Borders is one group offering free medical care, but number are such that most refugees have to pay for treatment. More than half of those with chronic illness simply can't pay for essential medicines the group says. The U.N. warned in January that it would not be able to help the millions of Syrians in need without more money.

Sick Syrians suffer as aid lags

Thursday, Feb 07, 2013 - 01:31

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