Survivors of Syrian Chemical Weapons Attack Visit Capitol Hill

b_250_0_16777215_00_images_obgrabber_2014-02_4b2ea2caec.jpgBunyos/Thinkstock (WASHINGTON) -- Two women who survived a chemical weapons attack in the town of Moadamiyeh in Syria last August, came to Capitol Hill Thursday to press lawmakers to increase U.S. involvement in Syria. “We need solutions. This humanitarian aid…helps the survivors to live longer under the suffering. We need the suffering to end first,” Heba Sawan, one of the Syrian women who survived a chemical weapons attack, said in a news conference Thursday.

“It’s not all about the chemical weapons and the humanitarian aid…it’s more and more beyond that,” Sawan said. “We’re humans. We’re dying there.”

Sawan and her cousin Amineh were in Moadamiyeh during the chemical weapons attack in August of 2013. Army forces then surrounded the city and blocked food and aid. The two cousins escaped Moadamiyeh with the help of the Red Cross during a humanitarian “pause.”

The two women, who were also joined by Anas al-Dabas of Daraya, Syria, spoke after meeting with Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va.

“We have to ratchet up our international pressure within the organizations in which we participate, especially the United Nations, to provide relief to Syrian citizens,” Kaine said. “I want to see what every nation around that table has to say as all eyes are on Russia now with respect to the provision of humanitarian aid to Syrians who are suffering.”

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