British-Syrian doctor speaking at the Women in the World Summit today. She’s the founder and CEO of the nonprofit CanDo.
DR. ROLA HALLAM: As doctors and as humanitarians, we’re not interested in regime change and who’s in charge. What we are interested in is stopping the bloodshed and stopping this mass murder and massacre of civilians. I don’t think that it’s a very big change in policy, to be honest. I think it’s just now a little bit more honest than it was before.
And I’ll be speaking with the U.S. ambassador, Haley, at the summit this evening. And I look forward to speaking with her about what does the United Nations intend to do on these blatant disregard for various humanitarian laws and norms, because I think this is a really dangerous precedent that’s being set right now in Syria. When it becomes normal to target and bomb hospitals and use it as a weapon of war, when it becomes normal, after countless resolutions in the United Nations banning the use of these mass—agents of mass destruction, then what happens next? And what if—in another war in Europe, in the States, is it OK to start bombing your hospitals? I think that is an incredible, dangerous precedent.
DR. ROLA HALLAM: I think Russia can do an awful lot, as we know. It supposedly brokered this chemical weapons deal back in 2013, which we know was just a stage. There’s been over 160 chemical weapons attack. And actually, there was one large one back in December using sarin gas, where nearly a hundred people were killed there, as well. So, I think there is a huge amount that they can do.
But, look, we’re not short on evidence in Syria, Amy. What we are short on is action. We’re short on leadership. It is—it is complex. But there are—I cannot believe that in—you know, we’re human beings. We’ve put man on the moon. We’re now talking about setting up colonies on the moon and Mars. It is not beyond the realms of possibility that we actually can bring a political solution and stop this bloodshed. But it requires leadership, and brave leadership, and we seem to be short on that around the world.
DR. ROLA HALLAM: Yes, that is the glimmer of hope in this real kind of scene of absolute devastation. So, the People’s Convoy was basically—it came out of the bombings of five hospitals in east Aleppo back in November. And I knew that so many people around the world, engaged citizens, wanted to show their love, care and support and solidarity with Syrian humanitarians, but didn’t know how to channel that. So that was where the People’s Convoy came. And over 5,000 people from around the world crowdfunded the first-ever hospital. And we then physically took the hospital equipment all the way to Syria, working with the Independent Doctors Association, our Syrian NGO. And they were just so incredibly moved by this happening from around the world. They’ve called it Hope Hospital. And today, Hope Hospital opened its doors to children in Aleppo area.
16 hours ago – She’s the founder and CEO of the nonprofit CanDo. … Hallam, a British-Syrian doctor speaking at the Women in the World Summit here in New York today. … Late last year, she led the People’s Convoy, rebuilding a children’s hospital in Aleppo. …. AMY GOODMAN: Your hospital is openingtoday in Aleppo?