The last 15 doctors in war-ravaged Aleppo in eastern Syria are calling on President Obama to help bring an end to the bombardment of hospitals there, the BBC reports. If no action is taken, the doctors warned, there won’t be any medical facilities left within a month. "We do not need tears or sympathy or even prayers: we desperately need a zone free from bombing over eastern Aleppo to stop the attacks, and international action to ensure Aleppo is never besieged again," the doctors write. A medical facility in the rebel-held enclave is attacked every 17 hours, forcing the diminishing number of doctors to make horrifying choices such as which children will be provided with life-saving resources, they write, per the Guardian.
The plea for help came as the Russians said they would suspend their air campaign over Aleppo for three hours each day to allow humanitarian aid to be delivered. The UN, however, said a 48-hour halt is needed, along with safe access to a two-lane road. Fighting in Aleppo has intensified recently as rebels have cut off the government’s main route to the west. "We have seen no effort on behalf of the United States to lift the siege or even use its influence to push the parties to protect civilians," say the doctors, whose full letter is at CNN. A US official tells the network that the White House is working with the UN and Russia on a way to allow in humanitarian aid.