An aid convoy of nine trucks carrying food, health and other supplies for 7,200 people reached the besieged rebel-held Damascus enclave of Eastern Ghouta on Wednesday, the United Nations and Syrian Arab Red Crescent said.
The convoy is the first since November 28 to enter Eastern Ghouta, where almost 400,000 civilians are under siege, and follows months of pleading by the United Nations for the Assad regime to grant access and agree to a ceasefire.
"First @UN and @SYRedCrescent inter-agency convoy this year crossed conflict lines to #Nashabieh in #EastGhouta to deliver food, health and nutrition supplies for 7,200 people in the besieged enclave," the UN Office for Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in a tweet.
The relief items included some 1.8 tonnes of medical supplies from the World Health Organization (WHO), its representative in Syria Elizabeth Hoff told Reuters.
These were enough to provide 10,000 treatments, including antibiotics, dialysis sessions, insulin, life-saving medicines, trauma and pneumonia kits and hospitals beds, she said.
Hoff said that there was no news regarding the more than 700 patients who await medical evacuation from eastern Ghouta, for which the UN health agency has been seeking regime approval for months.
Last week was one of the bloodiest in Syria as Assad regime forces, backed by Russia and Iran, bombarded two of the last major rebel areas of Syria - Eastern Ghouta near Damascus and the northwestern province of Idlib.