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Hunger, Death Swamp Damascus Refugee Camp

  • This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows Israa al-Masri, a baby who later died of hunger-related illness on Jan. 11, 2014 in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

    This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows Israa al-Masri, a baby who later died of hunger-related illness on Jan. 11, 2014 in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

  • This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows Israa al-Masri, a baby who later died of hunger-related illness on Jan. 11, 2014 in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

    This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows Israa al-Masri, a baby who later died of hunger-related illness on Jan. 11, 2014 in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

  • This activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows the emaciated body of Awad al-Saidi, who residents said died of hunger and sickness on Jan. 10, 2014 in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

    This activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows the emaciated body of Awad al-Saidi, who residents said died of hunger and sickness on Jan. 10, 2014 in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

  • This activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows the emaciated body of Awad al-Saidi, who residents said died of hunger and sickness on Jan. 10, 2014 in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

    This activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows the emaciated body of Awad al-Saidi, who residents said died of hunger and sickness on Jan. 10, 2014 in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

  • This activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014 shows children performing in a play, some acting as dead bodies of victims of starvation, that sought to show the living conditions in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

    This activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014 shows children performing in a play, some acting as dead bodies of victims of starvation, that sought to show the living conditions in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

  • This activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014 shows children performing in a play, some acting as dead bodies of victims of starvation, that sought to show the living conditions in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

    This activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014 shows children performing in a play, some acting as dead bodies of victims of starvation, that sought to show the living conditions in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

  • This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014 shows a funeral for a resident who died during the siege of the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

    This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014 shows a funeral for a resident who died during the siege of the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

  • This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014 shows a funeral for a resident who died during the siege of the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

    This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014 shows a funeral for a resident who died during the siege of the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

  • This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows mourners praying next to the body of a man who died of hunger-related illness in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

    This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows mourners praying next to the body of a man who died of hunger-related illness in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

  • This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows mourners praying next to the body of a man who died of hunger-related illness in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

    This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows mourners praying next to the body of a man who died of hunger-related illness in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

  • This Jan. 6, 2014 activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows a child sitting on a broken sidewalk after hearing that Syrian authorities would allow civilians to leave  in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Hundreds tried to leave, only to find that fighting broke out, and the evacuation was canceled. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

    This Jan. 6, 2014 activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows a child sitting on a broken sidewalk after hearing that Syrian authorities would allow civilians to leave in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Hundreds tried to leave, only to find that fighting broke out, and the evacuation was canceled. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

  • This Jan. 6, 2014 activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows a child sitting on a broken sidewalk after hearing that Syrian authorities would allow civilians to leave  in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Hundreds tried to leave, only to find that fighting broke out, and the evacuation was canceled. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

    This Jan. 6, 2014 activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows a child sitting on a broken sidewalk after hearing that Syrian authorities would allow civilians to leave in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Hundreds tried to leave, only to find that fighting broke out, and the evacuation was canceled. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

  • US Secretary of State John Kerry, center, with Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, right, and U.N-Arab League envoy for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi, left, before the start of their meeting at the US Ambassador's residence in Paris, France, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. Kerry is in Paris for meetings on Syria to rally international support for ending the three-year civil war in Syria. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, Pool)

    US Secretary of State John Kerry, center, with Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, right, and U.N-Arab League envoy for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi, left, before the start of their meeting at the US Ambassador's residence in Paris, France, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. Kerry is in Paris for meetings on Syria to rally international support for ending the three-year civil war in Syria. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, Pool)

  • US Secretary of State John Kerry, center, with Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, right, and U.N-Arab League envoy for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi, left, before the start of their meeting at the US Ambassador's residence in Paris, France, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. Kerry is in Paris for meetings on Syria to rally international support for ending the three-year civil war in Syria. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, Pool)

    US Secretary of State John Kerry, center, with Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, right, and U.N-Arab League envoy for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi, left, before the start of their meeting at the US Ambassador's residence in Paris, France, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. Kerry is in Paris for meetings on Syria to rally international support for ending the three-year civil war in Syria. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, Pool)

  • US Secretary of State John Kerry, right, walks with Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, left, following the conclusion of their joint news conference with U.N-Arab League envoy for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi, at the US Ambassador's residence in Paris, France, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. Kerry is in Paris for meetings on Syria to rally international support for ending the three-year civil war in Syria. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, Pool)

    US Secretary of State John Kerry, right, walks with Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, left, following the conclusion of their joint news conference with U.N-Arab League envoy for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi, at the US Ambassador's residence in Paris, France, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. Kerry is in Paris for meetings on Syria to rally international support for ending the three-year civil war in Syria. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, Pool)

  • US Secretary of State John Kerry, right, walks with Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, left, following the conclusion of their joint news conference with U.N-Arab League envoy for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi, at the US Ambassador's residence in Paris, France, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. Kerry is in Paris for meetings on Syria to rally international support for ending the three-year civil war in Syria. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, Pool)

    US Secretary of State John Kerry, right, walks with Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, left, following the conclusion of their joint news conference with U.N-Arab League envoy for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi, at the US Ambassador's residence in Paris, France, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. Kerry is in Paris for meetings on Syria to rally international support for ending the three-year civil war in Syria. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, Pool)

  • This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows Israa al-Masri, a baby who later died of hunger-related illness on Jan. 11, 2014 in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

    This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows Israa al-Masri, a baby who later died of hunger-related illness on Jan. 11, 2014 in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

  • This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows Israa al-Masri, a baby who later died of hunger-related illness on Jan. 11, 2014 in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)
  • This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows Israa al-Masri, a baby who later died of hunger-related illness on Jan. 11, 2014 in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)
  • This activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows the emaciated body of Awad al-Saidi, who residents said died of hunger and sickness on Jan. 10, 2014 in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)
  • This activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows the emaciated body of Awad al-Saidi, who residents said died of hunger and sickness on Jan. 10, 2014 in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)
  • This activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014 shows children performing in a play, some acting as dead bodies of victims of starvation, that sought to show the living conditions in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)
  • This activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014 shows children performing in a play, some acting as dead bodies of victims of starvation, that sought to show the living conditions in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)
  • This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014 shows a funeral for a resident who died during the siege of the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)
  • This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014 shows a funeral for a resident who died during the siege of the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)
  • This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows mourners praying next to the body of a man who died of hunger-related illness in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)
  • This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows mourners praying next to the body of a man who died of hunger-related illness in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)
  • This Jan. 6, 2014 activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows a child sitting on a broken sidewalk after hearing that Syrian authorities would allow civilians to leave  in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Hundreds tried to leave, only to find that fighting broke out, and the evacuation was canceled. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)
  • This Jan. 6, 2014 activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows a child sitting on a broken sidewalk after hearing that Syrian authorities would allow civilians to leave  in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Hundreds tried to leave, only to find that fighting broke out, and the evacuation was canceled. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)
  • US Secretary of State John Kerry, center, with Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, right, and U.N-Arab League envoy for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi, left, before the start of their meeting at the US Ambassador's residence in Paris, France, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. Kerry is in Paris for meetings on Syria to rally international support for ending the three-year civil war in Syria. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, Pool)
  • US Secretary of State John Kerry, center, with Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, right, and U.N-Arab League envoy for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi, left, before the start of their meeting at the US Ambassador's residence in Paris, France, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. Kerry is in Paris for meetings on Syria to rally international support for ending the three-year civil war in Syria. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, Pool)
  • US Secretary of State John Kerry, right, walks with Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, left, following the conclusion of their joint news conference with U.N-Arab League envoy for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi, at the US Ambassador's residence in Paris, France, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. Kerry is in Paris for meetings on Syria to rally international support for ending the three-year civil war in Syria. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, Pool)
  • US Secretary of State John Kerry, right, walks with Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, left, following the conclusion of their joint news conference with U.N-Arab League envoy for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi, at the US Ambassador's residence in Paris, France, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. Kerry is in Paris for meetings on Syria to rally international support for ending the three-year civil war in Syria. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, Pool)
  • This undated activist photo provided by the group Palestinians of Syria shows Israa al-Masri, a baby who later died of hunger-related illness on Jan. 11, 2014 in the Palestinian neighborhood of Yarmouk in Damascus, Syria. Disturbing images of starving children and elderly are emerging from the besieged neighborhood capital Damascus, where forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are forbidding food and aid to enter the rebel-held area. Already, the U.N. estimates more than a dozen people have died of hunger-related illnesses, and some residents are foraging for food in a blockade that reflects a broader government policy of starving out opposition areas in Syria's bitter war.(AP Photo/Palestinians of Syria)

Beirut — Children, the elderly and others displaced by Syria’s civil war are starving to death in a besieged camp where women brave sniper fire to forage for food just minutes from the relative prosperity of Damascus.

The dire conditions at the Yarmouk camp are a striking example of the catastrophe unfolding in rebel-held areas blockaded by the Syrian government. U.S. and Russian diplomats said Monday the warring sides are considering opening humanitarian corridors to let in aid and build confidence ahead of an international peace conference on Syria.

Interviews with residents and U.N. officials, as well as photos and videos provided to The Associated Press, reveal an unfolding tragedy in the sprawling camp, where tens of thousands of Palestinian refugees and displaced Syrians are trapped under an intensifying yearlong blockade.

Forty-six people have died since October of starvation, illnesses exacerbated by hunger or because they couldn’t obtain medical aid, residents said.

“There are no more people in Yarmouk, only skeletons with yellow skin,” said 27-year-old resident Umm Hassan.

“Children are crying from hunger. The hospital has no medicine. People are just dying,” she told the AP by telephone, adding that her 3-year-old daughter and 2-year-old son were rapidly losing weight from lack of food.

Other deaths suggest the extent of desperation among residents: A teenager hung himself in late December after returning home without food to feed his starving mother. An elderly man was beaten to death by thieves who ransacked his home, looking for food. and money.