UN / SYRIA HUMANITARIAN CROSS-BORDER VOTE

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09-Jul-2021 00:02:23
The Security Council on Friday voted unanimously to extend the UN cross-border aid operation in northwest Syria for another 12 months, providing a lifeline for more than 3.4 million people in need, including some one million children. UNIFEED

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STORY: UN / SYRIA HUMANITARIAN CROSS-BORDER VOTE
TRT: 02:23
SOURCE: UNIFEED
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / ARABIC / RUSSIAN / NATS

DATELINE: 09 JULY 2021, NEW YORK CITY / FILE

SHOTLIST:

FILE – NEW YORK CITY

1. Wide shot, exterior United Nations Headquarters

09 JULY 2021, NEW YORK CITY

2. Wide shot, Security Council
3. Various shots, Security Council vote
4. Med shot, Syrian Ambassador
5. SOUNDBITE (English) Linda Thomas-Greenfield, Permanent Representative to the United Nations, United States:
“The humanitarian agreement we’ve reached here will literally save lives. So, today’s vote is an important moment. It’s a moment for millions of Syrians, who will not have to worry about starving to death in the coming weeks.”
6. Med shot, delegates
7. SOUNDBITE (English) Linda Thomas-Greenfield, Permanent Representative to the United Nations, United States:
“It’s important that the United States and Russia were able to come together on a humanitarian initiative that serves the interests of the Syrian people.”
8. Med shot, delegates
9. SOUNDBITE (Russian) Vassily Nebenzia, Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Russian Federation:
“Today we are witnessing an historical moment. For the first time Russia and The United States not only managed to find an agreement but to present a joint text which was supported by all nor colleagues in the Council. We expect that this day will become a turning point. Not only Syria will win from this, but the whole Middle Eastern region, and the world as a whole.”
10. Med shot, delegates
11. SOUNDBITE (Arabic) Bassam al-Sabbagh, Permanent Representative of Syrian Arab Republic to the United Nations:
“The exaggeration made by those countries in describing this mechanism as a lifeline to promote it is a misleading characterization aimed at playing with the sentiment of public opinion and emotionally blackmailing it. In addition, the propaganda visits by the representatives of some of those countries to the areas near the Bab Al-Hawa crossing represents a blatant expression of the unilateralism, selectivity, and bias of these states and how they ignore the suffering of millions of Syrian people in various Syrian provinces due to the unilateral coercive actions that they impose.”
12. Wide shot, Council

STORYLINE:

The Security Council today (9 Jul) voted unanimously to extend the UN cross-border aid operation in northwest Syria for another 12 months, providing a lifeline for more than 3.4 million people in need, including some one million children.

After the vote, US Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield said the agreement reached by the Council “will literally save lives” and is an important moment “for millions of Syrians, who will not have to worry about starving to death in the coming weeks.”

Thomas-Greenfield said it was also important “that the United States and Russia were able to come together on a humanitarian initiative that serves the interests of the Syrian people.”

Russian Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia told the Council that today was “an historical moment” as “for the first time Russia and The United States not only managed to find an agreement but to present a joint text which was supported by all nor colleagues in the Council.”

Nebenzia said, “we expect that this day will become a turning point. Not only Syria will win from this, but the whole Middle Eastern region, and the world as a whole.”

For his part Syrian Ambassador Bassam al-Sabbagh said, “the exaggeration made by those countries in describing this mechanism as a lifeline to promote it is a misleading characterization aimed at playing with the sentiment of public opinion and emotionally blackmailing it. In addition, the propaganda visits by the representatives of some of those countries to the areas near the Bab Al-Hawa crossing represents a blatant expression of the unilateralism, selectivity, and bias of these states and how they ignore the suffering of millions of Syrian people in various Syrian provinces due to the unilateral coercive actions that they impose.”

The compromise resolution after weeks of delay, emerged from discussions on Friday morning. It calls for a “substantive” UN report to be provided on aid access across the Syria-Turkish border at Bab al-Hawa, after six months, with a focus on “transparency in operations, and progress on cross-line access in meeting humanitarian needs”.

However, the operation will not depend on reauthorization in January, and can extend through to July next year.

The resolution calls on Member States “to respond with practical steps to address the urgent needs of the Syrian people, in light of the profound socio-economic and humanitarian impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Syria, as a country in situation of complex humanitarian emergency”.

In May, 26,000 people received their first COVID-19 vaccination thanks to the border crossing.
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