Feb. 22, 2014 – The Security Council on Saturday voted unanimously to adopt Resolution 2139 which demands unhindered access for humanitarian relief operations in Syria.
It specifically demands that the Syrian government allow aid delivery across international borders, a move which Australia’s UN envoy, Gary Quinlan, a co-sponsor of the resolution, said will allow humanitarian agencies to urgently provide assistance to more than one million people.
Luxembourg’s UN ambassador, Sylvie Lucas, another co-sponsor, said the implementation of the resolution will be “closely monitored by the Council.”
“We will see the first report from the secretary-general in 30 days and then every 30 days thereafter. This means that individuals and entities who are obstructing will be able to be held accountable. It also means that in the case of non-compliance there will be a trigger for further Council action.”
Najib Ghadbian, the opposition Syrian Coalition representative to the UN, said the Council must be ready to back up its threat of further action if the Syrian government does not comply.
“Failing that, we urge responsible nations to work with humanitarian agencies to deliver aid directly across Syria’s borders even without the consent of the regime,” he said in a statement. “The overwhelming humanitarian need and the strong international consensus to alleviate it provide all the legal justification that is required.”
– Denis Fitzgerald
On Twitter @denisfitz
(Image courtesy of the Syrian Arab Red Crescent)