Security Council urged to help spare Syrians from ‘devastation’

© UNICEF/UN056256/Ebo In this file photo, a convoy of UN humanitarian vehicles moves through the war-ravaged city of Homs. While aid access has improved in parts of Syria, millions of civilians remain dependent on cross-border deliveries of food and other aid.

This article is brought to you in association with the United Nations.

An escalation in fighting across northern Syria illustrates the “fragility” of the situation in the war-torn region, a senior UN humanitarian official said on Thursday, urging sustained international efforts to protect millions trapped there, from “devastation.”

Reported shelling – with mortars allegedly containing chlorine gas – against densely populated neighbourhoods in Aleppo was particularly worrying, Reena Ghelani, the Director of Operations and Advocacy at the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), told the Security Council.

“Any confirmed use of chemical weapons is abhorrent and a clear and egregious violation of international law,” she stressed.

People with respiratory symptoms were rushed to the two main medical centres in the area, she continued, noting that the World Health Organization (WHO) “stands ready to provide further public health support as required.”

In addition, airstrikes were also reported in the Idlib Governorate on 24 and 25 November, Ms. Ghelani told Council members, which were the first such incidents in more than two months, since the demilitarization agreement between Russia and Turkey in September.

“The stakes remain high as the alternative is humanitarian suffering on a scale that would devastate a population of some three million people in northwestern Syria who have known nothing but war and suffering in recent years,” she warned.

Reena Ghelani, Director of Operations and Advocacy at OCHA, briefs a Security Council meeting on the humanitarian situation in Syria.

UN relief workers ‘shocked’ by what they saw in Rukban

Turning to humanitarian efforts, Ms. Ghelani, reported back on the joint UN-Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) convoy to Rukban, earlier this month. It was the first relief since January, which brought food and other essential supplies to nearly 50,000 displaced persons and allowed over 5,000 children to be vaccinated against deadly diseases.

The situation there, however, continues to remain troubling, she said, describing how “colleagues returned shocked from what they saw on the ground, reporting grave protection issues, increasing food insecurity and no certified medical doctors among the stranded population.”

Given the urgent need and approaching winter, the UN Secretary-General has called for another convoy to be urgently deployed, she added.

Elsewhere in Syria, fighting continues to displace populations and millions remain dependent on assistance for their survival, with little semblance of safety and security.

The worst affected are Syrian children. Over 50,000 in the north-east of the country are facing challenges accessing schools and education, and an estimated 10,000 having not been able to attend classes since September.

“Vehicles, including school buses and private cars, have been prevented from crossing check-points if they are carrying children going to schools teaching the nationally accredited curriculum,” said Ms. Ghelani.

‘Millions of people depend on your decision’

In her briefing, Ms. Ghelani also called on the Security Council to extend, for a further year, its resolution authorizing cross-border humanitarian convoys which provide more than 4.3 million Syrians in non-Government controlled areas – a third of those in need across the country – with food and non-food relief items.

She explained that the cross-border assistance has a strict monitoring regime, checked and verified by the UN Monitoring Mechanism at designated border crossing points, confirmation of deliveries upon arrival as well as post-distribution monitoring by independent third parties and feedback from affected communities.

“Every truck is checked to ensure it only contains humanitarian supplies,” stressed the UN official, adding that there were no “alternative means of reaching these people as access from within the country is impeded … The renewal of the resolution will continue to save lives. Millions of people depend on your decision.”

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Featured Stings

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Those who produce food are among world’s hungriest – UN rights expert

The EU responds to US challenges by fining Apple with €13 billion

Korea should improve the quality of employment for older workers

5 facts about global military spending

Ercom, cutting-edge Telco solutions from Europe

TTIP is not dead as of yet, the 15th round of negotiations in New York shouts

Strengthening security through an EU-wide information system

UN chief condemns attack in south-west Iran which killed dozens

Myanmar military leaders must face genocide charges – UN report

MEPs list conditions for new EU-Azerbaijan deal

‘Never give up’: UN chief urges all who serve, marking UN Day

Bitpay @ TheNextWeb 2014: Innovation’s Best Friend

Nuclear weapons in Lithuania: defence against Russia or target for terrorists?

Japanese law professor elected new judge at the International Court of Justice

It’s a lie Eurozone isn’t competitive

This crisis cannot be confronted with statistics

Russia accepts what the EU has to offer and settles to negotiate with Ukraine

South Sudan’s women caught up in ‘futile man’s war’ UN gender equality chief

EU-Russia relations: the beginning of a warmer winter?

Entrepreneurship in a newly shaped Europe: what is the survival kit for a young Catalan and British entrepreneur in 2018?

Online government services could change your life. But only if you have access to the internet

The US may be “open” to reviving TTIP, while the EU designs the future of trade with China

‘Passport to dignity’ that schools represent may expire fast, without emergency funding warns UN Palestine refugee agency

EU leaders slammed on anti-tax evasion inaction and expensive energy

EU trade agreements deliver on growth and jobs, support sustainable development

How technology is leading us to new climate change solutions

COP21 Breaking News: “We must accelerate the process”, Laurent Fabius cries out from Paris

May threatens the EU with a wild Brexit indifferent to Scotland, Northern Ireland and the City

Drinking water: new plans to improve tap water quality and cut plastic litter

Madagascar: UN chief commends nation on first round of peaceful elections

YouTube stars get creative at UN, to promote tolerance

Here’s how India can soar in the Fourth Industrial Revolution

Mali: Presidential elections critical to consolidate democracy, says UN peacekeeping chief

EU finally agreed to cut roaming charges in 2017 but criticism is always there

EU Budget: A Reform Support Programme and an Investment Stabilisation Function to strengthen Europe’s Economic and Monetary Union

Commission goes less than mid-way on expensive euro

European Council: Choosing new leaders for the EU betrays efforts for a wider arrangement

daniela-runchi-jade-president__

A Sting Exclusive: “Education in Europe, fostering skills development inside and outside the school system”

Bangladesh, South Africa and Bolivia all beat the US for women’s representation in politics

Euronest: delivering reforms is the best way forward for EU’s Eastern Partners

The Commission sees ‘moderate recovery’ but prospects deteriorate

As the Universal Declaration of Human Rights turns 70 – is it time for a new approach?

Pharmaceuticals: Commission refines intellectual property rules

Commission offers discount on fines to banks for competition infringements

E-Governance: A powerful tool to combat, mitigate and sustainably manage disaster risks

Germany’s fiscal and financial self-destructive policies

How ducks are helping Bangladeshi farmers cope with cyclones

Eurozone: Even good statistics mean deeper recession

Immigrants make good entrepreneurs. This study proves it

Gloomy new statistics signify no end to Eurozone’s economic misery

Silicon Valley can do more to achieve the #GlobalGoals

ZTE @ MWC14: ZTE excels in all areas at this year’s Mobile World Congress

IMF: How can Eurozone avoid stagnation

India’s agro-food sector has made strong progress, but a new policy approach is needed to meet future challenges, says new report by OECD and ICRIER

2,300 migrant children in Central American ‘caravan’ need protection, UNICEF says

China hails human rights progress amid calls to close detention camps

The European Sting live from the World Economic Forum 2015 in Davos

OECD economic scenarios to 2060 illustrate the long-run benefits of structural reforms

Africa’s Sahel must be a top priority for UN peacebuilding efforts, says commission

Elections results: Austerity’s black to prevail in the new multicolored German government

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s