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Security Council - Explanation of Vote on the Resolution on humanitarian assistance in Syria



Security Council - Explanation of Vote on the Resolution on humanitarian assistance in Syria

Explanation of Vote delivered by Ambassador Inigo Lambertini, Deputy Permanent Representative of Italy to the United Nations, at the Security Council meeting on the renewal of the Resolution on the Syria cross border assistance ---

Mr. President,

We want to thank the three pen-holders Egypt, Japan and Sweden for the restless efforts that allow us to adopt this Resolution.

We have voted in favour of the 2393 Resolution because it authorizes the continuation of lifesaving cross-border assistance in Syria. Such activities continue to be irreplaceable by other modalities of assistance and indispensable for the survival of civilians living in areas serviced by them.

Significantly, the resolution we have just adopted renews the authorization for these operation for a period of 12 months, thereby giving both beneficiaries and humanitarian actors a predictable and sustained time horizon going forward. Given the volatility of the situation in Syria and continuing high levels of humanitarian needs, such a time frame represents the necessary minimum extension for a meaningful renewal of the measure authorized by this resolution.

As we have repeatedly heard in this Chamber, however, the true limit of humanitarian access in Syria lies with the persistently low level of cross-line deliveries to rebel-held areas of the country that are not reached by cross-border assistance. Sadly, several previous resolutions of this Council, regarding the obligation of timely, unhindered and unfettered access for humanitarian aid have not been adequately implemented, and this, notably, due to the obstacles posed by the Syrian regime. This has led to the humanitarian tragedies we have heard of month by month in this Chamber.

Eastern Ghouta is where this humanitarian tragedy is currently being played out. It is here that the civilian population, despite a de-escalation agreement, is being besieged and bombed by the regime. It is here that - while humanitarian convoys are prevented from reaching those in need - the staples that enter Ghouta through commercial flows have seen price increases of up to tenfold, lining the pockets of those who control such flows. It is here that children and women die due to lack of medications and the regime’s denial to their urgent evacuation to hospitals a few kilometers away.

Mr. President

this is why we would have liked to see in this resolution a clear commitment, not only to a review of the cross-border operation, but also to a review of the cross-line operations and the reasons of repeated failures to deliver.

Mr. President,

in welcoming the renewal of this resolution and the continuation of the cross-border assistance that is so greatly needed on the ground, we reiterate the call to lift all sieges, to ensure that cross-line assistance is promptly delivered, to allow urgent medical evacuations and to ensure that nation-wide humanitarian access be rapid, safe and unhindered.