World Vision welcomes UN Security Council Resolution 2585 adopted today, reauthorizing the UN’s cross-border operations via Bab al Hawa for an additional 12 months. Humanitarian needs are peaking to the highest levels seen during Syria’s 10-year war - increasing by a staggering 20 percent since 2020 as a result of ongoing conflict, displacement and the socio-economic impacts of the COVID-19 crisis. The UN Security Council’s vote today to renew the Syria cross-border resolution will allow humanitarian agencies to continue providing critical life-saving assistance to millions of children and families in Northwest Syria at a time when they need it most.
World Vision is deeply disappointed, however, that given the extent of humanitarian needs, the Council was unable to come to a consensus around employing all existing modalities for reaching Northern Syria, including by re-authorizing the additional Bab al Salam crossing to the northwest and the al Yarubyah crossing to the northeast. World Vision also notes that the Resolution extends the cross-border mechanism via Bab al Hawa for six months, with an additional six-month extension subject to the issuance of a report by the Secretary-General. This extension will come at the start of winter and will be critical to ensure delivery of life-saving aid is not disrupted during a time of heightened risk.
“We are relieved that UN Security Council members were able to reauthorize the cross-border mechanism and use of Bab al Hawa, the last critical lifeline for children in Northwest Syria. Services can now continue to reach those who need them most in Northwest Syria and World Vision will continue supporting families and children to find hope despite the insecurity they face,” said Johan Mooij, Syria Response Director for World Vision International.
Syria is one of the most dangerous places in the world to be a child. An estimated 55,000 children have been killed over the last decade. Thousands have suffered grave violations of their rights. Nearly half of children in Northwest Syria are currently out of school and more than 75 percent are in dire need of mental health and psychosocial support. As families struggle to survive, children are increasingly exposed to risk of being forced into early marriage and dangerous labour.
“Now is not the time to pause if we are to invest in Syria’s human capital - children. They tell us that nowhere is safe for them, and we see families returning to living in camps as they lose their jobs and livelihoods. Improving humanitarian access to all those in need across Northern Syria must be a top priority for the international community, as must be continued advocacy for a lasting ceasefire. This will go a long way to enabling sustained, unfettered humanitarian access to the millions in need across Syria,” added Mooji.
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