Seventy-two kinds of medicines are missing from the market, in the wake of the economic sanctions on the country, the difficulty of access to certain hotspots, and the shutdown of many pharmaceutical laboratories, said Syrian Minister for Health Saad Naif.

He, however, stressed that the health ministry is working to secure drugs through local plants and through the imports from some friendly countries and international organizations.

Despite the government's assurances, several types of medicine are no longer available at pharmacies. Slump in manufacturing has indicated that the country is facing a serious medicine shortage.

The minister indicated that the ministry, in order to offset the shortfall, has contracted to buy some medical equipment worth up to 900 million Syrian pounds and signed a contract to buy 100 ambulances from Iran.

In this regard, a medical aid cargo arrived in Damascus Sunday as a gift from Russia to the Syrian people.

Syria's official media said that the aid aimed at alleviating the suffering of the Syrians due to the rebels' attacks against health establishments and medicine factories and the economic sanctions imposed on Syria.

Last week, Russia sent an aid to Syria combining 44 tons of medical materials.


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