The following statement was issued by the Spokesman for UN Secretary-General António Guterres:

The Secretary-General welcomes the Security Council’s decision to extend the United Nations cross-border mechanism in north-west Syria via the Bab al-Hawa border crossing.

Cross-border humanitarian assistance remains a lifeline for millions of people in the area and beyond.  The reauthorization will ensure humanitarian assistance continues for over 3.4 million people in need, including 1 million children.

However, needs continue to outstrip the response.  As the Secretary-General has highlighted to the Council, with additional crossings and expanded funding, the United Nations could do more to help the rising number of people in need.

The United Nations continues to engage with all parties to also facilitate cross‑line convoys.  They are critical for the expansion of the overall response as humanitarian needs continue to grow.

The Secretary-General reiterates his call on all parties to the conflict to ensure humanitarian access to all people in need, in accordance with international humanitarian law.

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