Attacks on Syria’s health care personnel and facilities

Health Cluster

WHO works with local partners to respond to health needs of the population of northern Syria whose medical centres have been damaged by the conflict.

Health care facilities in Syria have been targeted by bombs and other means of violence for years.  Since the beginning of the conflict there have been more than 500 recorded attacks on health facilities, in which over 800 health staff were killed. In the first half of 2017 alone, 18 health care workers were killed and more than 30 injured in 62 verified attacks on health care facilities. More than 30 ambulances and  hospitals were also impacted in these attacks.

WHO demands that all parties in the conflict respect the safety and neutrality of health workers and health facilities. Some patterns of attacks indicate that health care is being deliberately targeted in the Syrian conflict –a major violation of international law that shows a tragic disregard for our common humanity.

The Turkey Health Cluster - a group of medical organizations coordinated by WHO, based in Gaziantep, Turkey - monitors attacks on health care facilities in northern Syria, verifying and collecting information. This complements the provision of health services, staff and supplies to meet the health needs of populations in northern Syria.