Security Council urged to put aside differences on Syria

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Stephen O’Brien, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, briefs the Security Council on the humanitarian situation in Syria. UN Photo/Manuel Elias

A ceasefire or 48-hour pause in the fighting in Syria is not a negotiating tactic but what is needed to get aid to scores of desperate people.

That's what UN Emergency Relief Coordinator Stephen O'Brien told the Security Council on Monday.

Dianne Penn reports.

The UN humanitarian chief urged countries with any influence in Syria to rapidly reach agreement on a ceasefire for the city of Aleppo and other areas in the country.

Mr O'Brien said aid trucks are ready to hit the shell-cratered roads as soon as they are given the green light.

He expressed anger that the "callous carnage that is Syria" has continued unabated for more than half a decade.

"What is happening in Aleppo today and throughout Syria over the last five years is an outrage against every moral fibre in our being as human beings, as fellow human beings, with every Syrian caught up in this unending cataclysm. And it is the failure of politics, of all of us; you know this as members of the Security Council.  So please now is the moment, this instant, to put differences aside, come together as one and stop this humanitarian shame upon us all, once and for all."

Mr O'Brien also used the opportunity to salute aid workers, including Syrian search and rescue volunteers known as the White Helmets. 

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration: 1’07″

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