Statement

Hundreds of Pregnant Women in Homs, Syria Need Help Urgently

6 August 2013

UNITED NATIONS, New York — UNFPA is concerned over the prevailing security situation in and around the city of Homs, Syria, particularly in the area of Al-Waer. With over 400,000 civilians currently displaced due to heavy fighting, it is estimated that hundreds of pregnant women may require urgent medical attention.

The UNFPA-supported clinic in Al-Waer is providing reproductive health-care, with over 1,500 people benefiting from these services in the last 20 days alone. There are currently 8 to 10 births every day in one hospital alone in Al-Wear of which nearly 75% require caesarean sections.

Today, UNFPA staff on the ground delivered some 200 clean delivery kits, which contain basic items to ensure safe births, to partners in Al-Waer. These will be distributed to shelters in areas where pregnant women may not be able to reach health facilities.

Extreme restrictions on access and mobility in Homs and throughout Syria are putting the lives of women, girls and their families at high risk.

In addition to the daunting stress and trauma of violence, Syrian women who are just a few days away from giving birth may have no options but to deliver at home with no medical help or risk their lives by fleeing in the hope of delivering safely elsewhere. They are in a dire need of essential services.

In any conflict, the threat of all forms of gender-based violence and psychological trauma is very real, and we also call on all parties to ensure the protection of women, adolescent girls and boys.

We call on all parties to allow medical supplies, particularly drugs, to enter the Al-Waer area and facilitate immediate safe access to women and girls in need of assistance so that UNFPA and its partners can provide life-saving services.

UNFPA will continue to ensure that every pregnancy is wanted, every childbirth is safe and every young person’s potential is fulfilled.

For more information please contact:

In New York:
Mandy Kibel, +1 (212) 212 297 5293, kibel@unfpa.org
Alexandra Sicotte-Levesque, +1 (212) 297-5077, sicotte-levesque@unfpa.org

In Cairo:
Aicha El Basri, +201 021291254, elbasri@unfpa.org
 

Syrian Arab Republic
Population:
22.0 mil
  • Fertility rate
    3
  • Maternal Mortality Ratio
    49
  • Contraceptives prevalence rate
    41
  • Population aged 10-24
    31%
Youth secondary school enrollment:
Boys 69%
Girls 69%