UN Extends Cross-Border Aid to Syria for Six Months

    Photo: OCHA [via UN News]

    The Facts

    • The UN Security Council has agreed to reauthorize cross-border humanitarian aid to internally displaced people (IDPs) in rebel-held northern Syria for six months following a vote on Tues. The resolution was submitted by Ireland and Norway, and was supported by twelve countries with France, the UK and the US abstaining.

    • On Fri., Russia vetoed a resolution, also put forward by Ireland and Norway, that would've reauthorized cross-border aid to Syria by one year. The resolution didn't have the support of Damascus, but a UN mandate would've enabled it to pass without the backing of Syrian Pres., and Russian ally, Bashar al-Assad.


    The Spin

    Anti-Russia narrative

    Humanitarian need in Syria is the highest it has ever been - making a 12-month renewal imperative to provide greater operational and ethical reassurances. Despite the passage of this resolution, greater humanitarian security hasn't been achieved on behalf of the Syrians who desperately need help and the politically motivated opposition to such provision by the likes of Russia and Syria is morally unjustified.

    Pro-Russia narrative

    Only if western nations facilitate an open and substantive dialogue will the whole of the Security Council be able to assess whether the Syrian cross-border humanitarian aid mechanism (CBM) is working. Russia will follow the implementation of its resolution closely to ensure cross-line deliveries to the whole of Syria are enhanced and sanctions on the nation are lifted, given the disruption caused by COVID. If the UN satisfies these provisions, Russia will be open to supporting extensions.

    Nerd narrative

    There is a 2% chance that Russia will be removed from the UN Security Council by 2024, according to the Metaculus prediction community.


    Establishment split

    CRITICAL

    PRO

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