Syria: Guterres underlines ‘moral imperative’ to continue cross-border aid operation from Türkiye |

Overall, more than 14 million people in Syria need support amid a dire situation in which infrastructure collapses and economic activity halves due to conflict, the regional financial crisis, sanctions, and more. penalty, and COVID-19 pandemic.

Resolution 2585, unanimously adopted last July, calls for continued use of the Bab al-Hawa crossing into the northwest, in addition to progress in the delivery of cross-border aid within Syrian territory. .

Maintain consensus

The Secretary-General said that although the massive humanitarian response undertaken by the UN and its partners prevented the worst, need more help.

“I strongly urge the members of the Council to maintain consensus on allowing cross-border activities, by extending resolution 2585 by 12 months. That is a moral imperative to address the suffering and vulnerability of 4.1 million people in the region in need of assistance and protection,” he said. speak.

The cross-border mechanism was first authorized in 2014, and since then, more than 50,000 trucks have rolled into war-torn Syria.

Mr Guterres told the Council it was one of the most closely watched and monitored aid operations in the world.

End humanitarian tragedy

In addition to calling for a renewal of the resolution, the Secretary-General also called on the ambassadors to do everything in their power to encourage the warring parties in Syria to come to the negotiating table.

“The only way to end the humanitarian tragedy in Syria is through a real nationwide ceasefire and a political solution he said.

The UN’s head of humanitarian affairs Martin Griffiths briefed the ambassadors on some of the progress that has been made since July.

“This time last year, there were no convoys crossing the route into northwestern Syria. Since resolution 2585 was passed, we have carried out 5 convoys of 14 trucks each, from Government controlled areas to Idleb, into the northwest,” he said.

“This has opened up cross-border access into northwestern Syria for the first time in the past 12 months since 2017. It’s not a small thing. ”

‘We want to do more’

The trucks carry food for more than 43,000 people at a time, along with nutrition, hygiene, medical and educational supplies.

“But we want to do more, we need to do more, we expect to do more, and we are working to expand accessibility,” he continued. “But we need a favorable environment. We need timely approval from all parties involved and ensure security, especially for safe passage. And, of course, we need funding. ”

Mr. Griffiths emphasized the imperative to continue providing support from Türkiye for another 12 months. Last year, about 800 trucks delivered relief supplies to the northwest, reaching just under 2.4 million people.

Without cross-border access, he warned, hunger would increase, cases would go untreated, distribution of COVID-19 vaccines would be disrupted and the ability to protect millions of women and Women’s protection from gender-based violence would also be severely limited, among other consequences.

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