As hawks from the United States and Great Britain generate war fever with a show of naval force off the coast of Syria, there are deepening concerns among human rights acivists that a military strike from these nations will only make things worse for the Syrian people. Al Jazeera reported on Aug. 30, 2013, Syrian civilians in desperate need, as threat of US strike looms. The International Committee of the Red Cross has warned any escalation of the Syrian crisis in response to last week's reported chemical weapons attack will aggravate suffering of Syrian civilians.
The ICRC, which is an independent humanitarian agency, has said it was appalled by reports of a poison gas attack on Aug. 21 which is said to have left hundreds dead. The U.S. says this attack was carried out by President Bashar al-Assad's regime. The ICRC has urged the warring parties in Syria's two-year civil war to respect the absolute ban on chemical weapons use under international law. And, Magne Barth, who is the head of the ICRC's delegation in Syria, says proposed Western military action would "likely trigger more displacement and add to humanitarian needs, which are already immense."
Reuters has also reported that the International Committee of the Red Cross said any escalation of the Syrian crisis following a chemical weapons attack will worsen suffering of civilians. Already there are acute shortages of vital medical supplies, food and water in many areas in Syria which have been cut off from aid deliveries for months.