Syria aid convoys not making progress, says Envoy

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Staffan de Mistura, United Nations Special Envoy for Syria speaking after a humanitarian taskforce meeting in Geneva. Photo: UN Photo / Jean-Marc Ferré

Disappointment at the lack of progress in getting aid convoys to those in dire need in war-torn Syria has been voiced by the UN Special Envoy for the country Staffan de Mistura.

Since the start of the year, some 450,000 people have received humanitarian aid in besieged, hard–to-reach and other priority areas.

Here's Daniel Johnson in Geneva.

UN Syria Envoy Staffan de Mistura expressed the sense of "frustration and disappointment" as he emerged from an international humanitarian taskforce meeting in Geneva on Thursday.

"I cannot deny that everyone in the meeting was disappointed, indeed, many of them frustrated at the lack of new convoys reaching some areas that as you know have been identified as besieged."

While more nearly 451,000 people have received aid in besieged, hard-to-reach and other priority cross-line areas in Syria since the start of the year, it's the lack of expected, incremental progress in getting to those in dire need that's causing concern.

And in an effort to turn the situation around, de Mistura announced that the international humanitarian taskforce had discussed exerting more pressure "at a higher level", without giving more details.

After more than five years of war and over 250,000 people killed, medical supplies are also desperately needed in Syria.

On the issue of adding certain life-saving medical items to aid convoys, the UN negotiator said that he had received recent assurances from the government of Syria that they would be allowed.

Daniel Johnson, United Nations, Geneva.

Duration: 1’13″



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