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First aid trucks in weeks arrive in Syria's Ghouta region

By Ed Adamczyk
First aid trucks in weeks arrive in Syria's Ghouta region
The first convoy of humanitarian aid in a month arrived Monday in eastern Ghouta, Syria, but not before medical supplies and other aid were confiscated by Syrian government forces. Photo courtesy International Committee of the Red Cross/Twitter

March 5 (UPI) -- Convoys of humanitarian aid arrived in Syria's eastern Ghouta region on Monday, but not before some supplies were taken by government forces.

A convoy of 6 vehicles, organized by the United Nations and its humanitarian partners, brought enough food for more than 27,000 people into the city.

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Monday's arrival is the first humanitarian convoy sent to eastern Ghouta since a smaller delivery last month.

Ghouta has been the site of two weeks of shelling and combat between rebel groups and the Syrian government, backed by Russian airpower.

About one-third of Ghouta, on the edge of the city of Damascus, was retaken by government troops, Sky News reported. It added that a World Health Organization official said, "All trauma kits, surgical, dialysis sessions and insulin were rejected by security." The official said 70 percent of the items on its trucks had been removed during the inspection.

About 400,000 people remain trapped in eastern Ghouta, which has been under attack by government forces since 2013. The intensity of the attacks has accelerated in the past two weeks, during which about 700 civilians were reported killed.

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Approval came Sunday for delivery of supplies to the suburban city of Dhouma during a planned daily ceasefire period.

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