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Cuma, Aralık 1, 2023

UN Urges Extension On Turkish Humanitarian Aid, Syria Opposed

Mutlaka Oku

By Janet Ekstract

ISTANBUL- Late last week, U.N. Aid Chief Martin Griffiths pushed the U.N. Security Council to extend a Turkish humanitarian aid program to assist Syrians for one year. The long-term aid operation was delivering assistance to millions of people in northwest Syria but Syrian authorities are opposed to the U.N. operation that’s been delivering food, medicine and shelter to opposition-controlled areas in Syria since 2014. As Griffiths explained: “A 12-month authorization enables us and our partners to deliver better humanitarian outcomes in the months ahead. It is as simple as that.”

Authorization is necessary from the 15-member Security Council since Syrian officials have not agreed to the aid delivery. Currently, there is a six-month authorization due to expire on July 10 and part of Syria’s opposition lies with the fact that Russia’s U.N. Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia countered last Thursday that such an operation would violate the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Syrians. Russia has also repeatedly questioned the necessity of delivering aid from outside Syria as Nebenzia remarked: “They’re trying to convince us that the cross-border mechanism should be extended for 12 months in order to better plan operations.” He added:”Let us ask the question, what means will the U.N be using to plan these operations?”

A major issue in getting the aid operation underway is that the $5.4 billion U.N aid appeal is less than 12% funded, Griffiths told the Security Council. He said it’s the largest aid appeal in the world for Syria for 2023. He added: “It has never been quite so ill-funded in the history of this conflict.” Griffiths has been urging countries to pay their pledges of $5 billion made this month to support people in Syria and neighboring states hosting Syrian refugees this year. The Security Council originally authorized aid deliveries in 2014, into opposition-held areas of Syria from Iraq, Jordan and two sectors in Turkiye but Russia along with China reduced it to one Turkish border crossing. Britain has already pledged $190 million and urged Russia to pay its contribution, citing the fact Britain said Russia “spends $2 billion a year on the Wagner Group.”


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