Syria conflict: UN fears Aleppo assault could cut off 300,000 civilians

A girl mourns the loss of her relatives after air strikes by pro-Syrian government forces in the rebel-held Saliheen district of Aleppo (8 February 2016)

Up to 300,000 people could be cut off from food supplies if Syrian government forces encircle rebel-held parts of the northern city of Aleppo, the UN says.

A road from Turkey used by the World Food Programme to reach eastern Aleppo was blocked last week after the government launched a major offensive.

The agency currently has an alternative route, but it may soon be severed too.

The UN is also calling on Turkey to let in some 30,000 people stranded on its border who have fled the fighting.

Aid workers say facilities at the border have been overwhelmed, with people forced to sleep outside in the bitter winter weather.

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