Humanitarians encouraged by Security Council resolution on Syria

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Kyung-wha Kang. UN Photo/Loey Felipe

Although UN agencies and their humanitarian partners continue to provide assistance to millions of people affected by the Syrian conflict, more is needed, the Security Council heard on Monday.

UN Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Kyung-wha Kang briefed the chamber on the ongoing needs.

She said a recently finalized plan calls for nearly US$3.2 billion to assist 13.5 million people in the country in 2016.

Dianne Penn reports.

Ms Kang told the Security Council that over half the Syrian population has been displaced since the crisis began nearly five years ago.

Some 6.5 million people are displaced within Syria and more than four million have fled the country, mostly to neighbouring states.

In the past months, the UN and its partners were only able to reach 32 per cent of hard-to-reach locations.

She called on the authorities to approve 47 pending convoy requests and for armed groups—including terrorist groups—to allow deliveries to proceed.

"As we enter a new year, we must do our utmost to bring hope back to Syrians who have suffered too much. The conflict must be brought to an end through a comprehensive political solution addressing its underlying causes. We pin our hopes on the efforts of the International Support Group for Syria, and are encouraged by the resolution that this Council adopted on 18 December."

UN High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres reported that Syrians comprised half of the nearly one million people who arrived by boat in Europe this year.

He said Syrians will continue to try to reach Europe unless there is a "fundamental change" in the factors pushing them to leave.

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration: 1’19″

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