Statement on the renewal of humanitarian lifeline to millions of people in north west Syria
ROME/GENEVA/NEW YORK, 18 June 2021 - "Millions of people are pressed up against the border in an active war zone in north-west Syria and remain in need of humanitarian aid to survive. The UN needs cross-border and cross-line access to reach those most in need.
"We call for the renewal of Security Council authorization for cross-border operations from Turkey to north-west Syria. A failure to do so would immediately stop UN delivery of food, COVID-19 vaccines, critical medical supplies, shelter, protection, clean water and sanitation, and other life-saving assistance to 3.4 million people, including 1 million children.
"The UN continues engagement with all concerned parties to also allow cross-line convoys into the north-west. They are critical for the expansion of the overall response, but even if deployed regularly they could not replicate the size and scope of the cross-border operation. There is simply no alternative.
"A large-scale UN cross-border response for an additional 12 months remains essential to avert a humanitarian catastrophe in north-west Syria."
Mr. Mark Lowcock, Emergency Relief Coordinator and Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)
Mr. António Vitorino, Director General, International Organization for Migration (IOM)
Dr. Natalia Kanem, Executive Director, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)
Mr. David Beasley, Executive Director, World Food Programme (WFP)
Mr. Filippo Grandi, High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
Ms. Henrietta H. Fore, Executive Director, United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)
Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO)
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