IRC statement on renewal of UN Security Council resolution 2165 on humanitarian access in Syria

17 Dec 2014 - David Miliband, President & CEO of the International Rescue Committee, said:

“Today’s decision by the Security Council to renew resolution 2165 is an essential one. The resolution has secured some more aid for the long-suffering Syrian people, but their needs are growing faster than the aid is arriving. The resolution reaffirms the instruction to UN agencies and other humanitarian organizations to deliver aid to meet massive need in Syria – by working from neighboring countries and across conflict lines. Now the international community must act to ensure that the resolution secures real gains on the ground for every single person requiring assistance. The Syrian people can wait no longer: for many, it is a matter of life and death.”

Mark Schnellbaecher, IRC Director, Syria Regional Response, said:

"The International Rescue Committee (IRC) welcomes today’s decision by the UN Security Council to renew resolution 2165 for a further 12 months. The consensus achieved in New York shows that each of the Council’s 15 members recognizes the importance of ensuring that aid reaches all those in need inside Syria. Now the focus must be on transforming the resolution’s provisions into action, and securing real humanitarian gains on the ground for Syria’s beleaguered population."

"The Security Council, and other states, have an important role to play here. The IRC, which is delivering lifesaving assistance to those in need inside Syria, and to Syrian refugees in neighboring countries, has repeatedly called on the members of the Council and key Middle Eastern states to appoint senior political figures and diplomats as humanitarian envoys, mandated and resourced to bolster UN efforts to break down physical and administrative barriers to those requiring aid. We reiterate that call today. With some 212,000 people still living in areas that are completely besieged and cut off from all assistance, the need for top-level, focused commitment to improving humanitarian access in Syria has never been greater."

"Resolution 2165 explicitly authorizes UN agencies and other humanitarian organizations to deliver aid from neighboring countries and across conflict lines. Its unanimous adoption by the Security Council in July constituted a diplomatic breakthrough: more must be done to give life to its provisions, and to put aid in the hands of Syria’s hungry. The UN’s agencies should immediately ramp up their cross-border and cross-line assistance to those in need – not singly, but as part of a concerted, uniform, interagency operation, with clearly defined roles, responsibilities, mandates and targets. They should also coordinate with and facilitate the work of NGOs like the IRC, which has been delivering aid into Syria from neighboring countries for almost three years."

Media contact:

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