9 year old Aysar* holds his little brother Azmi*.

Azmi* (2) is slowly recovering from malnutrition. Azmi*’s parents were forced to flee their home in North West Syria because of conflict, and now live in a displacement camp where they struggle to get food for their four children. The family is being helped by Save the Children’s partner Syria Relief. Credit: Syria Relief/Save the Children

U.N. Decision on Syria Cross-Border Mandate – Save the Children Statement

FAIRFIELD, Conn. (July 9, 2021) – The U.N. Security Council’s decision today could keep the only effective route for humanitarian aid into North West Syria open for another 12 months but more is needed to help millions of children living there, Save the Children said.

The Security Council voted to renew the mandate for the Bab al-Hawa crossing for six months with a further six month extension agreed subject to a Secretary General report.

Inger Ashing, CEO of Save the Children International, said re-authorizing the Bab al-Hawa border crossing would help millions of families in northern Syria – including millions of children – who rely on humanitarian aid to survive.

But she said failing to unequivocally re-authorize for 12 months or increase the number of international routes into Syria would limit the ability of U.N. agencies and humanitarian actors to reach millions of people in northern Syria, including children, whose needs have never been greater after 10 years of conflict, an economic crisis and a global pandemic.

“Unfortunately, the Security Council failed to listen to the plea of humanitarian actors to expand the number of crossings the U.N. is authorized to use to respond to the growing humanitarian needs,” Ms Ashing said.

“Our research from earlier this year found that inside and outside the country, Syrian children do not see a future in their country. The Security Council must continue to work to find lasting solutions to the crisis, including by continuing to ensure that the lifeline millions of people rely on is able to provide the support they desperately need.”

“Chronic malnutrition is rising and child labor and child marriage are widespread. People are losing the ability to cope.”

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