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United Nations Resident Coordinator and Humanitarian Coordinator in Syria, Imran Riza, and Regional Humanitarian Coordinator for the Syria Crisis, Muhannad Hadi - Joint Statement on Civilian Casualties in Afrin, Syria, 13 June 2021 [EN/AR]

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The United Nations Resident Coordinator and Humanitarian Coordinator for Syria, Mr. Imran Riza, and the Regional Humanitarian Coordinator for the Syria Crisis, Mr. Muhannad Hadi, strongly condemn the recent attacks in Afrin city, northern Syria, including a horrific attack on Al-Shifaa Hospital.

According to reports, artillery shelling and missiles on 12 June killed at least 13 people, including at least two healthcare workers, and injured at least 11 additional hospital staff and several civilians. A midwife reportedly remains in a critical condition. Major damage to the hospital building, including complete destruction of clinic and delivery rooms, has also been reported.

The Al-Shifaa Hospital, one of the largest medical facilities in northern Syria, has been hit three times since 2019. It provides an average of 15,000 medical services each month, including 350 newborn deliveries and 250 specialized surgeries, and has been financially supported by the UN since July 2019.

Mr. Riza and Mr. Hadi strongly condemn these incidents and pass on their sincere condolences to those affected. For the people of Syria, already beleaguered by ten years of crisis, health facilities should be safe havens. They reiterate that directing attacks against civilians and civilian infrastructure, including hospitals, are strictly prohibited under international humanitarian law.

They further echo the Secretary-General’s call for accountability for crimes perpetrated in Syria.

For further information:

Danielle Moylan, Spokespe

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs: To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit