The UN Security Council demanded that all parties, particularly the Syrian authorities, immediately open routes across conflict lines and borders to let in vital humanitarian aid.
In a unanimous resolution voicing grave concern at the lack of compliance with several previous Council demands for such access, the 15-member body passed resolution 2258 on Tuesday, which renewed for a further 12 months the Council’s authorization of the demand for humanitarian access.
The Council requested “the Syrian authorities to expeditiously respond to all requests for cross-line deliveries submitted by the United Nations and their implementing partners, and to give such requests positive consideration.”
It cited a decline in convoy approvals by the Assad regime, noting that as of 31 October, only 27 out of 91 UN inter-agency requests in 2015 had been approved in principle, and that between 2013 and 2015, the percentage of convoys approved in principle declined from 65% to 29%.
The Council said it was “gravely distressed” by the devastating humanitarian situation in Syria, with urgent humanitarian aid, including medical assistance, now required by over 13.5 million people inside the country, 6.5 million of them internally displaced, 4.5 million living in hard-to-reach areas, including Palestinian refugees, and 393,700 trapped in besieged areas. (Source: Syrian Coalition + Agencies)