Deir al-Zor Suffers Under Islamic State’s Harsh Rules on Aid

Silent and subdued, Um Qassem stands in a long queue in the city of Deir al-Zor waiting to receive a package of food aid.

Um Qassem, who once stood strong and proud, who was steadfast and tearless even when she buried her son, is now broken and humiliated. All her hopes are invested on a cardboard box stamped with the logo of the Bureau of Alms of Islamic State.

The food packages are the first to be delivered under an aid initiative by Islamic State (IS).

Like many other people here, Um Qassem is suffering fresh indignities that only add to the problems created since November, when IS decided to shut down aid organisations and end their relief work in the area of Deir al-Zor it controls.

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