Wednesday October 27, 2021

HRW warns of ‘calamity’ if Syria aid crossing shuts

June 11, 2021

BEIRUT: Millions of people in Syria’s opposition-held northwest risk losing lifesaving assistance if a Russian veto at the UN closes the region’s last aid crossing, Human Rights Watch warned on Thursday.

The only way UN assistance can currently reach Syria’s northwest is through Bab al-Hawa crossing on the Turkish border, where about 1,000 trucks enter monthly. In 2014, the UN Security Council allowed aid operations to cross at four points but last year -- after objections from Russia and China -- this was reduced to just Bab al-Hawa.

The resolution on humanitarian aid access to Syria expires on July 10 and is up for a Security Council vote before then. "Shutting down the only remaining UN lifeline into northwest Syria would cut off millions of people from aid and unleash a humanitarian calamity," HRW’s Gerry Simpson said.