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Russia to view disruptions of humanitarian supplies to Syria’s Idlib as sabotage

Polyansky also stressed the importance of UN presence in northwest Syria in order to enhance control over the distribution of humanitarian assistance

UNITED NATIONS, January 28. /TASS/. Russia will view disruptions in humanitarian deliveries to Syria’s Idlib as acts of sabotage and a deliberate threat to lives of ordinary Syrians, Russian First Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN Dmitry Polyansky has told the UN Security Council.

"The UN mandate for cross-border humanitarian deliveries to Syria through "Bab al-Hawa" crossing point will remain effective until 10 July 2022. There are a lot of things that we need to do in the remaining months, so we have no time to get started slowly," he said. "In the next five and a half months we need to fulfill a number of critical tasks. First of all, we need to ensure that the established mechanism for cross-line deliveries should keep working without interruptions and that it should be extended to the areas that cannot be accessed via the cross-border mechanism (CBM)."

"Any delays with dispatch of humanitarian convoys, i.a. to Idlib, cannot be perceived as anything other than a deliberate sabotage and intended threat to the lives of ordinary Syrians," the Russian diplomat continued.

"At the very minimum, we must fully implement the clear operational plan, articulated by OCHA in October last year," he said. "So far, there has been little progress with that. We expect our UNSC colleagues to adopt a principled stance on that matter."

Polyansky also stressed the importance of UN presence in northwest Syria "in order to enhance control over the distribution of humanitarian assistance."

"It is crucial to build up efforts to ensure early recovery of infrastructure that should provide essential services to the Syrians," he added.

Russia will continue its effort to search and eradicate members of the Islamic State (IS) terrorist organization (outlawed in Russia) on the territory of Syria, Russian First Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN has told.

"We must say that what happened at the US-occupied territory of Syria is the result of our colleagues making overtures to the terrorist elements in the Syrian Arab Republic," Polyansky said. "You learn nothing from history. Nor do you learn from your past mistakes. We warned repeatedly what this sort of indulgence to terrorist elements may lead to."

"This is why Syrian armed forced supported by the Russian military keep searching for and eradicating ISIL terrorists in Syria. This work will continue," he added. "We have offered to join our efforts many times, but as we could see, you prioritize political considerations over the goal of eradicating terrorism in Syria."

Russia is extremely alarmed about the possibility of indiscriminate US strikes in Syria, Polyansky said.

"We are very much concerned over the possible indiscriminate strikes of the American aviation, because wherever they are involved, there are often mass casualties among civilians," he said.

"When speaking at UNSC open debate on protection of civilians on 25 January, the Permanent Representative of the United States referred to very valid concepts: absolute imperative of observing the IHL norms by sides to an armed conflict, growing importance of protection of civilians during urban warfare. She also reminded how easily explosive ordnance can kill big groups of civilians," the Russian diplomat continued.

"Yet what we see in reality is that the US narrative again runs counter to their action. Thus, when clearing al-Sinaa prison and its surroundings of terrorists - urban warfare as it is - they used aviation and armored vehicles," he said.

Such heavy equipment obviously uses explosive ammunition, Polyansky added.

Syrian regions, which are being robbed of oil by the United States, are turning into a scene of environmental disaster, Polyansky said.

"We would like to avail of this meeting to focus again on the perilous situation that is evolving in Syria’s north-east that remains illegally occupied by our American colleagues. The areas that Americans have been robbing of oil suffer from a true environmental disaster. However the United Nations does not give any assessment to this situation," he said.

"We must say that cross-Euphrates area is another "grey spot" on the Syrian map, same as the al-Tanf area, where militants from "Mahavir as-Saura", indulged by the United States, enjoy total impunity and permissiveness," the Russian diplomat continued.

According to Polyansky, the illegal presence of US military in Syria created a "lawless zone" in the north-east, "where foreign terrorists and militants, as well as various criminals feel perfectly at ease."

"There is anarchy and violence, whereby terrorists are divided into "the good and the bad", they may be indulged, start "another life", and radicalize the local population," the diplomat said.

"This is how we can characterize any location where the US military has been stationed - both during their presence and upon withdrawal," he added. "The most recent example was Afghanistan, which the US left to deal with the overwhelming burden of problems that has been accumulated over the years of American occupation.".