Russia is trying to use the issue of the introduction of cross-border humanitarian aid into Syria as a pressure card on the United States and Western countries, which have tried to block the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Russia’s deputy representative to the United Nations, Dmitriy Polyanskiy, threatened to halt the decision to extend the entry of humanitarian aid through the Bab al-Hawa border crossing with Turkey.
“The mechanism for delivering cross-border aid expires in July, and among the provisions of the resolution, only one item is currently being implemented,” Polyanskiy said at a UN Security Council session on Syria last Thursday.
“Apparently, the parties will not meet all other provisions, while Damascus has proven that deliveries to Idleb across the contact lines are possible,” he said.
Assistant Secretary of State for Eastern Affairs and Special Envoy to Syria Ethan Goldrich stressed the need to extend the decision to introduce humanitarian aid.
This came during a meeting with Goldrich and the Norwegian Special envoy to Syria, Hilde Haraldstad, on the sidelines of the Constitutional Committee talks in Geneva, on Saturday.
The two sides discussed “the need to expand humanitarian access in Syria and move towards renewed cross-border access under the Security Council resolution.”
The Security Council is scheduled to vote on extending the mechanism in July.
Unlike in previous years, the Russian President may be aiming to block the resolution on cross-border aid to Syria, in response to Western pressure on the Ukrainian issue.
More than 1,000 trucks of humanitarian aid pass through the Bab al-Hawa border crossing between Syria and Turkey each month.
These shipments mainly serve hundreds of thousands of families living in difficult conditions in northwestern Syria.
U.S. Pressure and Turkish Role
Last year, Russia vetoed a U.S. draft resolution that provided for the introduction of aid through the Bab al-Hawa crossing and the Yarubiyah crossing with Iraq.
As a last-minute compromise, it was agreed to extend the introduction of aid by 12 months through the Bab al-Hawa crossing and to close the Yarubiyah crossing.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.