Syria crisis: A Palestinian plea from Yarmouk refugee camp
"Please, please take us out, we are dying here," 60-year-old Wafiqa pleads, sobbing uncontrollably as she cradles her lined face in rough gnarled hands.
She stumbles toward us in her grief, toward anyone she thinks can rescue her from the punishing eight-month siege of Yarmouk, a devastated Palestinian refugee camp south of Damascus.
Just behind her, a tide of hundreds of people presses against a security barrier. Armed men struggle to contain a crowd desperate to reach a UN food distribution point at the end of a narrow rutted road that cuts through a desolate wasteland of utter ruin.
"I'm so tired, so tired," one woman cries out.
It was as if she was a self-appointed spokesperson for the suffering.
Syria open to dialogue, but on its terms
While all eyes are on the crisis unfolding in Ukraine, a solution also still seems a long way away in the Syrian conflict.
When the recent peace talks collapsed in Geneva, the United States, France and Britain blamed the Syrian government, accusing it of blocking any chance of establishing a transitional government.
Homs evacuees: Anxious young men from a besieged Old City
We didn't recognize the men we'd met just a few days earlier when they emerged from the rebel-held Old Quarter of Homs.
Their ragged beards are trimmed or shaved. They have new clean clothes.
Syria conflict: Emerging from the siege of Homs
The first to arrive couldn't walk.
They hobbled on crutches, lay moaning on stretchers, or were gently eased into wheelchairs from white armoured vehicles with blue UN flags.
Syria conflict: Aid and evacuations continue in Homs
The "humanitarian pause" in the Old City of Homs is a rare glimmer of light in a dark and devastating war. The UN says the mission has already helped a "significant" number of people to leave the besieged area and a "limited" amount of aid is getting through.
The UN's resident humanitarian co-ordinator, Yacoub El Hillo, told me they were "baby steps" that, he hoped, could lead to the "giant steps" that were needed.
Syrian peace talks: Small steps forward, big lurches backwards
"If peace cannot be brought, how can humanity be brought to the conduct of the war?"
That's how David Miliband, who heads the International Rescue Committee, recently phrased two pressing goals for Syria.
More Syrians flee besieged Homs Old City
The tide of people continued - elderly men and women on stretchers or crutches, exhausted mothers in tears, children who went straight into the arms of waiting aid officials from the UN and the Syrian Arab Red Crescent Society. Water, bread, even polio vaccinations were provided on the spot.
Many residents who have finally escaped speak of having only grass and olives to eat.