The Syrian American Council Calls for Renewal of the Cross-border Resolution by United Nations Security Council
The Assad regime and its Russian backers continue to use denial of aid as a weapon of war against Syrian civilians
WASHINGTON D.C., July 7, 2020 – The Syrian American Council urges the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to renew Resolution 2504 (2165), which will expire on July 10, 2020, for 12 months. Further, the Syrian American Council calls on the UNSC to amend the resolution to include, in addition to Bab al-Hawa and Bab al-Salam border crossings, the Al Yaroubiyah and Al Ramtha border crossings. The Assad regime, backed by Russia, continue to weaponize aid, a war crime under the Rome statute, and a crime condemned by the UNSC in Resolution 2417.
Civilians in Rukban are dying a slow death because the Assad regime and Russia are withholding aid to force civilians out of the camp. In the northeast, civilians are left without consistent or regular lifesaving aid. In both cases, the U.N. has proven incapable of fulfilling its humanitarian responsibilities.
“The Assad regime and Russia have repeatedly shown that they will prevent aid from reaching populations outside their control. This leaves millions of lives hanging in the balance. The Security Council must do what is right, for all the civilians that rely on aid for their livelihoods”, said Darren Fenwick, vice president of the Syrian American Council. “If the UNSC fails to renew and amend resolution 2504, the U.S. must lead a global effort to eliminate the Assad regime’s weaponization of humanitarian assistance by providing cross-border aid to populations in northern Syria and airdrop aid to residents in Rukban camp, without the consent of the Assad regime and it’s principal backer, Russia.”
The Syrian American Council remains committed to ensuring the continued and equitable distribution of humanitarian aid in Syria. At a time when COVID-19 threatens to overwhelm a healthcare system already decimated by war, the UNSC must ensure open border crossings. The lives of Syrian civilians are non-negotiable. Global powers must act accordingly and comply with the U.N. Charter and international law.