Turkey’s IHH provides winter aid to Syrians in Idlib

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Turkish humanitarian organization Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH) has been providing winter aid to families living in Syria’s northwestern Idlib province, the charity announced Tuesday.

As part of a campaign launched by the Istanbul-based IHH for Syrians in need, 2,500 blankets, 3,000 boots and coats collected in the Antalya province were sent to Idlib province in Syria.

The head of the foundation’s Antalya branch, Mehmet Yıldırım, told Anadolu Agency (AA) that it had been organizing aid campaigns for those in need since the early stages of the civil war in Syria.

“Since the beginning of the war in 2011, IHH has been organizing aid campaigns during winters,” he said.

He went on to say: “As the Antalya branch, we’ve sent 206 truckloads of aid to Syria so far.”

Yildirim said the donations in the latest shipment would be delivered to the IHH coordination center in Idlib.

Snowfall and cold weather have made the situation difficult in Idlib’s tent camps, with strong winds causing destruction.

In freezing temperatures, children huddle together to keep themselves warm, burning pieces of plastic, old shoes and scraps of wood they collect for kindling.

Living in a region where temperatures can drop to minus 5 degrees Celsius (23 degrees Fahrenheit), the victims of the civil war are unable to purchase fuel and are resorting to burning their clothes to heat their tents.

Turkish aid agencies and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) continue to assist those in urgent need in northwestern Syria. Many Turkish NGOs and state agencies, including the Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD), the Turkish Red Crescent (Kızılay) and Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH), keep providing vital humanitarian aid and conducting humanitarian efforts in the region hosting nearly 4 million people.

The Idlib region is home to nearly 2.8 million displaced people and the last Syrian enclave to oppose the Bashar Assad regime in Damascus.

Idlib falls within a de-escalation zone forged under an agreement between Turkey and Russia in March 2020. However, the Assad regime has consistently violated the cease-fire terms, launching frequent attacks inside the de-escalation zone.

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