US should lift sanctions on Syria for disaster rescue: CGTN poll
In a recent poll, around 94.29% of respondents called for the immediate lifting of US sanctions to facilitate humanitarian aid efforts.
Many people around the world want the US to lift its sanctions against Syria to make earthquake relief easier, according to a CGTN poll.
The recent earthquakes in Turkey and Syria have killed over 23,000 people and caused a severe humanitarian crisis in the latter, which is already dealing with the aftermath of a decade-long war.
Despite the dire situation, rescue efforts in Syria are hampered by a scarcity of heavy equipment and professional medical supplies. Furthermore, tens of thousands have been displaced from their homes and are being forced to live in makeshift shelters with limited resources.
However, the United States has only partially and temporarily suspended unilateral sanctions against Syria, making it difficult for cargo planes carrying supplies to land at the country's airports.
The international community has reacted strongly to this. Approximately 94.29% of respondents in a poll conducted by CGTN called for the immediate lifting of US sanctions to aid humanitarian efforts.
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On CGTN's English-language platforms, 94.52% of respondents are dissatisfied with the US sanctions and believe they should be lifted unconditionally. Approximately 87.35% and 95.62% of respondents on CGTN's Arabic and Spanish platforms, respectively, agree.
The United States has long intervened in the Syrian crisis with frequent military operations and harsh economic sanctions, resulting in civilian casualties and a scarcity of basic life supplies for many people.
The US also currently occupies major oil production areas in Syria, exploiting more than 80% of the country's oil. It has also been smuggling and burning food supplies in Syria, exacerbating the humanitarian crisis.
According to Syria's foreign ministry, the United States violated the Syrian people's basic human rights and limited their ability to seek a better life. They also urged the United States to lift its sanctions and contribute meaningfully to global peace, stability, and development.
US sanctions standing in Syria's way
Commenting on the harsh situation in Syria due to the war and blockade, Syrian Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad told Al Mayadeen that terrorist groups destroyed all of Syria's capabilities, from vehicles to cranes and bulldozers, among other equipment, at a time when the competent authorities need them because people are trapped under the rubble.
"The US sanctions are prohibiting Syria from accessing anything, including medicine," the top diplomat said.
The Syrian official directed a message to US President Joe Biden, asking: "Didn't the Syrian state open border crossings to allow humanitarian aid to make it to armed-groups-held areas."
"The aid making it to areas held by armed groups were being sold to the people," he said. "They planned that aid only makes it through to armed groups and terrorists, and Syria is ready to let aid make it to all regions on the condition that it does not make it into the hands of terrorists."