NYT makes U-turn after saying Syria can’t receive aid due to sanctions

8 Feb, 2023

Source: Agencies

By Al Mayadeen English 

The New York Times goes in reverse and removes information about sanctions on Syria hindering aid efforts to the country in light of the disastrous earthquake that hit it.

Screenshot showing the previous summary of the New York Times news article discussing the aid effort to Syria, February 7, 2023 (Social Media)

The New York Times went back on its words after it said in the summary of one of its new articles on the devastating earthquake that took place in Syria that the disaster-stricken state could not receive aid because of the sanctions imposed on it.

Two hours after it was published, the article said: “As the Syrian government tightly controls what aid it allows into opposition-held areas, border crossings with Turkey have been a lifeline.”

It previously said: “Syria is not able to receive direct aid from many countries because of sanctions, so the border crossing has been a lifeline.”

The border crossing in question is the Bab Al-Hawa crossing that lies on the Turkish-Syrian borders, which has been pivotal for Syria over the past couple of days due to the harsh sanctions imposed on the country, preventing it from directly receiving aid.

It is noteworthy that in 2020, then-US President Donald Trump signed into law the so-called Caesar Act, under which Congress authorized severe economic sanctions against Syria. In accordance with the sanctions, anyone doing business with the Syrian authorities is potentially exposed to travel restrictions and financial sanctions.

The US claims that “the Caesar Act and other USW Syria sanctions do not target humanitarian assistance for the Syrian people” and that Washington will continue sending its alleged humanitarian assistance to Syrians. However, this was not the case following the devastating earthquake that struck Syria and was not mentioned anywhere in Biden’s remarks.

To add salt to injury, Damascus International Airport is still undergoing repairs and maintenance following the most Israeli airstrike on the facility on January 2. The airport is the target of repeated Israeli occupation assaults and airstrikes that put it out of service. This fact cannot be ignored as any humanitarian aid to land in the country will definitely be hindered.

Due to the inhumane sanctions imposed on Syria, the country is being deprived of humanitarian aid. At a time that calls for unity, Western nations turned away from Syria.

In these defining moments and amid this humanitarian catastrophe, it was expected that all political rifts and rivalries would be brought aside for a short while at least, mainly because the destructive event has directly affected civilians.

Following the earthquakes, several Western countries mobilized rapidly to send aid and rescue workers to Turkey but decided to exclude Syria and neglect it, by only offering condolences and merely expressing readiness to support the affected Syrians, with nothing done on the ground, in a clear show of double standards.

The death toll from the devastating earthquake in Syria has risen to more than 2,800, while rescue teams continue extensive search efforts to find survivors under the rubble.

On Monday, a 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, and Palestine, killing thousands, mainly in Turkey and Syria, and leveling houses and other facilities, including public infrastructure.

Read more: Western selective humanitarianism, Syria earthquake falls on deaf ears

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