The UN Security Council Monday unanimously adopted Resolution 2672, which authorized the renewal of the cross-border mechanism in Syria a day before it was set to expire.Resolution 2672 renewed the UN’s previous authorization of the Bab al-Hawa crossing point on Syria’s border with Türkiye. The UN Security Council first authorized the border crossing point in 2014 under Resolution 2165. The resolution established the border crossing point to facilitate humanitarian aid transport into Syria. The UN estimates that the extension of this humanitarian aid is needed for as many as 4.1 million people in northwest Syria. Along with the renewal, the council also requested the UN Secretary-General provide a special report on humanitarian needs in Syria by no later than June 10. The council demanded all relevant resolutions be implemented as a part of a broader, UN-wide effort to expand humanitarian activity in Syria.Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for UN Secretary-General António Guterres, said, “The United Nations is committed to pursuing all avenues to provide aid and protection through the safest and most direct and efficient routes. Humanitarian access across Syria, including through cross-border and cross-line operations, must be expanded and humanitarian activities be broadened through investment in early recovery projects.” Guterres urged UN members to continue supporting humanitarian partners’ efforts to deliver assistance to those in need within Syria.The UN Security Council’s decision to renew the Bab al-Hawa authorization came after a joint statement from international agencies urged the council to take action. On January 3, the heads of the UN Humanitarian Affairs Office (OCHA), International Organization for Migration (IOM), UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), World Food Programme (WFP), World Health Organization (WHO), UN Population Fund (UNFPA) and UN refugee agency (UNHCR) warned the UN Security Council, “The millions of people who depend on the cross-border lifeline for survival need [the] resolution to be renewed without delay.”In March 2022, the UN Syria Commission of Inquiry reported a worsening humanitarian crisis for Syrian civilians. The report estimated 14.6 million Syrians needed humanitarian assistance due to poverty levels, food insecurity and soaring inflation. In addition to the need noted in 2022, Syria is also currently suffering from a cholera outbreak.
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