UN Security Council has new aid plans for Syria

The new humanitarian delivery paths would include points from Turkey, Jordan and Iraq. But, Moscow has threatened it will veto any resolution that would abolish Damascus’ control over cross-border access to the country

UN Security Council has new aid plans for Syria

World Bulletin/News Desk

While major Western powers are considering a new push for the already drafted resolution to authorize coercive measures in cross-border aid delivery to Syria, others suggest the new resolution would be more of the same.

Western diplomats fears Russia may veto the new resolution, drafted by Australia, Jordan and Luxemburg, since it would deprive the government in Damascus of control in aid delivery, a UN diplomat told Anadolu Agency in New York.

It was not even clear, whether the draft resolution would be put to the vote next week, or in due time. Russia starts its presidency of the Security Council for June this Saturday.

Yet, the co-sponsors of the new resolution, which would allow Syrian humanitarian aid to be deliver from Turkey, Jordan and Iraq say their new approach is a justified, and “a stronger follow-up resolution” than the previous one.

The UN Syrian aid resolution adopted back in February without opposition from Moscow was binding but it was not enforceable. The aid delivery to Syria remained hindered and conditioned by Damascus, diplomats said.

- Aid in question

The UN has also said the resolution on Syrian aid delivery has failed.

Stephane Dujarric, chief spokesperson of the UN Secretary General told AA, it is “obviously, up to the Security Council members to decide whether or not to adopt the (new) resolution” on aid delivery to Syria.

“As to whether or not aid is getting through to Syria, to all Syrians who need it in sufficient numbers. I think clearly the answer is no,” said Dujarric.

He stressed - the UN Secretary General “is very clear on that in his report.”

And, “the Security Council is broken on Syria,” said Reza Afshar, UN Representative for the “Independent Diplomat,” New York based nongovernmental group of experts in international relations. 

“Russia has proven that it will use its veto power repeatedly to protect the Syrian regime,” Afshar, a former head of the team responsible for Syria policy at the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), told AA.  

He said it is imperative for aid to cross Syria's borders “without the consent of the regime.”

“90 percent of aid currently goes to regime-held areas because the regime uses its consent to decide to where aid can be distributed,” Afshar explained. “It uses aid as a weapon of war.”

- Chapter seven resolution

If the UN won't do cross-border without a new ‘Chapter seven’ resolution “and Russia will veto any ‘Chapter seven’ resolution,”  the International community should “get a group of countries together and channel funding and resources into a parallel humanitarian track,” Afshar suggested.

Russia, joined by China, has vetoed four resolutions against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad since the civil war in Syria started in March 2011, claiming more than 130,000 lives.

Earlier this month, both Moscow and Beijing blocked the council’s attempt to refer perpetrators of atrocities, regardless of their affiliation to the International Criminal Court for possible prosecution of war crimes.

Afshar said “the real pressure” should be put on Russia and China, for possible obstruction of the UN resolution.  

“Sanction Russian weapons companies,” he suggested. He also suggested Arab states “should be aggressively threatening to cut Chinese business contracts in the Middle East if it continues its support for Russia on the Security Council.”

According to the UN about 9.3 million people in Syria need help and 2.5 million became refugees.

Chinese backing of Russia “makes Russian vetoes less costly,” Afshar concluded.

Last Mod: 31 Mayıs 2014, 10:06
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