UNITED NATIONS, September 28. /TASS/. Russia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Vasily Nebenzya has called on the UN to check data on humanitarian cargoes delivered to Syria upon agreement with Damascus.
Speaking at a UN Security Council meeting on Wednesday, he drew attention to discrepancies in relevant statistics cited by UN officials.
Thus, UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock said that since early August the United Nations has managed to deliver humanitarian cargoes for 280,000 people out of 1.2 million access to whom had been requested from the Syrian authorities. US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley cited these statistics when criticizing Russia’s initiative to stop humanitarian deliveries to Syria from Turkey and Jordan if and when humanitarian access inside the country expands. She said it would leave more than one million people in Syria without vital assistance.
In reply to these remarks, the Russian diplomat suggested the situation with statistics be clarified. "I think this is a task for the new United Nations Under Secretary General. I remember fairly well that last time we discussed the situation in Syria, including humanitarian access, an OCHA (United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs - TASS) official provided convincing data on how many people were receiving relief aid thanks to assistance from the Syrian government. And he spoke not about a hundred thousand people but, as far as I remember, about five million who had received aid thanks to OCHA’s cooperation with the Syrian government," Nebenzya stressed.
"I want to clarify the situation about the figures. I would like to ask Mr. Lowcock to address this matter. Let us synchronize our watches," he said.
According to UN data, more than six years of armed confrontation in Syria have turned more than 6.3 million people into refugees and left 13.5 million in need of humanitarian assistance.
According to Lowcock, more than one million people in Syria are surviving thanks to humanitarian cargoes delivered by trucks across the frontlines but many others are cut off such assistance.