DAMASCUS, March 2. /TASS/. The citizens of Eastern Ghouta, a Damascus suburb controlled by the militants, are running out of foodstuffs and essentials, an official at the Russian Center for the Reconciliation of the Warring Parties in Syria told reporters on Friday.
The center has set up a hotline and received more than 30 complaints from the citizens and their relatives in Damascus about "the lack of medical assistance, water, foodstuffs and electric power supplies," Alexander Maslennikov said.
The militants have inflated prices on essentials and food, he noted. "People cannot have normal nutrition and many of them are ready to start eating stray animals," the official said.
Amid the lack of electricity and gas, many citizens have been forced to use their own clothes and shoes as fuel.
At 9.00 a.m. local time (10.00 a.m. Moscow Time) on Friday, the fourth humanitarian pause in Eastern Ghouta entered into force and will last until 2 p.m. (3 p.m. Moscow Time). The previous three humanitarian pauses have been disrupted due to the militants’ shelling. No citizens have been able to leave the area.
On Monday, Russian Defense Minister Army General Sergey Shoigu announced that under President Vladimir Putin’s order a daily humanitarian pause was declared in Eastern Ghouta starting from February 27.