Conjoined twins born in Syria’s Aleppo die a month later

Nawras and Moaz required surgery that was only available outside Syria, doctors said
Nawras and Moaz required surgery that was only available outside Syria, doctors said

One-month-old conjoined twins who were evacuated from a besieged rebel-held suburb of the Syrian capital Damascus have died, a medical charity says.

Nawras and Moaz were joined at the chest, with hearts in the same sac.

The government allowed them to be moved to a children’s hospital on 12 August after doctors launched an appeal.

The boys had been waiting for documents so they could travel abroad for vital surgery when they passed away, the Syrian American Medical Society said.

“The whole world couldn’t have the permission to evacuate them,” wrote the charity’s Turkey advocacy manager, Mohamad Katoub, on Twitter.

He was later quoted by the Syrian pro-opposition website Enab
Baladi as blaming “interference by the ministry of foreign affairs and its stalling of issuing a travel permit to any country to allow them to receive treatment”.

Moaz and Nawras weighed less than 12lb (5.4kg) when they were born by caesarean section on 23 July at the Zahra hospital in Douma, a town in the eastern Ghouta region outside Damascus.

Douma has been completely besieged by government forces for two years and the undersupplied hospital was unable to provide the twins with the care they required, according to SAMS.

The government allowed the boys to be transferred earlier this month after a social media appeal.

Within two days, a Syrian Arab Red Crescent ambulance was allowed to pass through the frontline and they were moved to a hospital in a government-controlled area with their mother.

SAMS warned that no hospital in Syria was able to provide the surgery the twins needed and that they continued to suffer while waiting to be transferred abroad.

Last week, Mr Katoub told the Wall Street Journal he was worried the transfer was being delayed because offers for treatment had come from the US and Saudi Arabia, both of which support the opposition to President Bashar al-Assad.

On Monday night, he tweeted: “Nawras & Moaz will be one month old, still waiting for ridiculous process of evacuation.”

Less than 48 hours later, Mr Katoub announced that the boys had died.

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