More than 140 trucks carrying aid have entered northwest Syria since the earthquake: United Nations
The United Nations said on Friday that more than 140 trucks carrying humanitarian aid supplies have crossed into opposition-held northwest Syria from Turkey since major earthquakes hit the two neighboring countries on February 6.
“Since February 9 until last night, we had a total of 143 trucks passing through the Bab al-Hawa and Bab al-Salama border crossings,” Jens Laerke, spokesman for the United Nations agency for the coordination of humanitarian affairs (OCHA), told reporters in Geneva.
“The movements continue today. They continue over the weekend and they will continue every day as long as there are needs.”
Eleven days after an earthquake that killed more than 41,000 people in Turkey and Syria, the situation in opposition-held northwest Syria remains dire due to slow aid access to a region wracked by years of conflict.
Before the earthquake, all essential humanitarian aid to the more than four million people living there was delivered through only one crossing, Bab al-Hawa.
Operations there were temporarily disrupted due to earthquake damage.
It took four days to get aid through that border crossing again, and earlier this week the Assad regime agreed to allow the United Nations to open two more border crossings to help bring in more aid.
“We expect trucks to pass by every day,” Larke said.
He pointed out that aid has so far flowed through the Bab al-Hawa and Bab al-Salama crossings, but no trucks have passed through the third al-Rai crossing.
“This does not mean that it will not come, but it is a little further from the center and the UN monitoring mechanism that checks all the aid that arrives,” he said.
The trucks that have crossed since the earthquake have been carrying “a large number of aid” from six United Nations agencies: the International Organization for Migration, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the United Nations Population Fund, the United Nations Children’s Agency and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Larkey said. , and the World Food Organization. Program and the World Health Organization.
“The aid has so far included tents and non-food items such as mattresses, blankets, winter clothes, cholera test kits, basic medicines and World Food Program food,” he said.