Foreign Minister Heiko Maas issued the following statement today (9 July) on the United Nations Security Council resolution on cross-border humanitarian aid in northwest Syria:
I am very relieved that the members of the Security Council agreed to extend the so-called “cross-border ” resolution and to allow further humanitarian aid deliveries from Turkey to northwest Syria via the Bab al Hawa border crossing. Given the suffering that the people of Syria have endured in the conflict that has been going on for more than ten years, the extension of the resolution is an absolutely necessary step - but by no means sufficient on its own. 3.4 million people in the region depend on humanitarian aid. For them, this support is simply vital. The plight of the people in Syria worsened even more last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic and economic collapse. In northwest Syria alone, 80 percent of those in need are women and children, and more than 1.6 million internally displaced people live in the simplest tent dwellings without any protection. Everywhere, there is a lack of essentials such as clean drinking water, food, clothing and medicine. Germany will continue to stand by the people in Syria and neighboring countries in this difficult situation and will not let up in both humanitarian aid and efforts to find a political solution to the Syrian conflict.
Today, the United Nations Security Council agreed to keep the Bab al Hawa border crossing from Turkey to northwest Syria open. This means that humanitarian access is secured for 6 months (until January 10th, 2022) and, depending on the Secretary General’s report, for an additional 6 months (until July 10th, 2022).
Resolution 2585/2021 was passed unanimously. The previous Resolution would have expired on Saturday night with no replacement. Germany is the second largest humanitarian donor to the people in Syria and neighboring countries. In 2020, the German Government provided 672 million euro for humanitarian efforts in the context of the Syrian crisis. Over 102 million euro from this contribution were implemented in the northwest of the country. This year, Germany has already contributed 82 million euro, and additional aid is in the pipeline. At the Brussels donor conference for Syria and the neighboring countries, Germany made the largest pledge of 1.738 billion euro and will continue to make a substantial financial contribution to the relief efforts led by the United Nations.