The Presidency of Religious Affairs hopes to deliver aid to thousands in the besieged Syrian city.

Civilians face dire conditions in Aleppo as winter deepens.
Civilians face dire conditions in Aleppo as winter deepens. (TRT World and Agencies)

Turkey has launched a humanitarian campaign to deliver aid to civilians trapped in Aleppo, as Assad forces and opposition fighters battle for control of Syria's second largest city.

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmuş on Thursday announced the campaign. The Turkish Presidency of Religious Affairs will deliver aid to people unable to access basic humanitarian needs in besieged areas.

"This is not just the announcement of an aid campaign. This is raising a voice against the destruction of Aleppo, which is one of the most beautiful cities in the region with its historical and geopolitical importance, the destruction of our culture in Aleppo, and most importantly the destruction of humanity that is dying in despair, hunger and in vain," Kurtulmuş said.

"Politically, many meetings have been held about how this issue has come to this point. Negotiations are in progress so that a solution can be found," he added.

The deputy prime minister urged the international community to do more to help.

"The international community should decisively make an effort to establish a lasting peace and ensure that humanitarian aid is delivered to Aleppo as soon as possible," Kurtulmus said.

Turkey hosts around 2.7 million Syrian refugees who have fled the civil war. The UN says the conflict in Syria has driven more than 4 million people from their homes since it began in 2011, causing the largest refugee crisis in a quarter of a century.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies