The Syrian Forum participated in a virtual meeting on “Cross-Border Aid” in the presence of representatives of Friends of Syria countries and speakers from Syrian and international civil society organizations.
At the invitation of the Syrian Higher Negotiation Commission, the Syrian Forum participated in the virtual meeting held in Geneva with ambassadors of the countries of the Friends of the Syrian people and speakers from Syrian and international civil society organizations.
The importance of continuing cross-border delivery of humanitarian aid and the humanitarian and field conditions in northwestern Syria was discussed.
The meeting was inaugurated by Bader Jamous, the head of the Syrian Higher Negotiation Commission, with the participation of a number of representatives of Syrian and international civil society organizations, such as the White Helmets, the American Relief Coalition for Syria (ARCS), the Syrian Forum, the Turkish Red Crescent, and GOAL Global. The meeting was facilitated by the Executive Director of the Local Councils Support Unit, Bahjat Hajjar.
Representatives from the United States of America, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Turkey, Qatar, France, Germany, and Canada also participated.
For his part, the CEO of the Syrian Forum, Ghassan Hitto, gave a briefing on the importance of continuing to deliver cross-border humanitarian aid to Syrian people and the role played by Ihsan for Relief and Development providing services to more than four million Syrians this past year.
Hitto stressed the importance of efforts made by all countries friendly to the Syrian people. He added that Syrians need the cross-border mechanism for humanitarian aid delivery to continue and called on the international community to further strengthen the work of this mechanism instead of spending time advocating for its continuation.
He also praised the role of international organizations and the continued pressure on the Russian Federation, which is trying to obstruct the delivery of humanitarian aid to more than 6 million Syrians, most of whom are internally displaced.
In his speech, Hitto said, “There is no need to repeat numbers and show charts about the massive humanitarian need in Syria, not only in opposition-held areas but all over Syria. It is also clear that the regime’s security services and bureaucratic structures are steeped in corruption, and its officials steal. Humanitarian aid is from those in need, so how can we trust them with cross-line operations, especially since they are already proven.”
Hitto stressed that “The crimes against humanity that they committed in Syria confirmed that human lives have no value for them.”
While stressing the importance of the role of Syrian NGOs, which are preparing to face the upcoming challenges, Hitto insisted that the United Nations needs to continue using the cross-border aid delivery mechanism, saying: “The failure to renew the decision on cross-border operations will lead to a clear inability of the United Nations and its partners to Continue to provide assistance, and there is no substitute for the UN-run cluster system, which is the main tool for coordinating all humanitarian operations in the north and northwest as well as throughout Syria.”