5 July 2023 - Syria

Cross-border aid to North West Syria must continue to ensure children survive, says Save the Children

save the children statement

NEW YORK, 5 July 2023 – As the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) gathers in New York ahead of a critical vote on UN aid access to North West Syria on Friday, Save the Children calls on its Members to ensure the Bab al-Hawa border crossing is kept open for a minimum of 12 months so that lifesaving aid can get to the 4.1 million people in need.

Kathryn Achilles, the Syria Advocacy, Media and Communications Director at Save the Children, said: 

“What children in Syria need is more access to aid, not less. While vital steps have been taken to improve access in North West Syria, including additional crossing points agreed by the Government of Syria, the Bab al Hawa crossing, which provides aid access for the UN specifically, is a lifeline. Children and their families in North West Syria need the UNSC to ensure the UN’s access is sustained for at least 12 months.

“Already, these children are suffering from more than12 years of conflict, with hunger and malnutrition soaring, and child labour and child marriage widespread.  February’s devastating earthquake shattered their lives even further. We are still piecing together the full impact of the destruction, but there is no doubt that children, who make up 58% of the population living in camps and shelters for displaced people, are suffering the most. A shocking 71,000 children are dependent on UN-funded nutrition programmes for their survival.

“A 12-month resolution on aid access for this essential route would ensure that the humanitarian community can plan to meet needs effectively. Not only to meet acute, life-saving needs of the 2.7 million people relying on assistance via Bab al-Hawa every month, but to support markets, create jobs and livelihood opportunities, and ensure that children and their families can reduce their reliance on humanitarian aid and build resilient, dignified lives.”



The UN’s access through the has been operating on a 6-month renewal cycle since 2021. The humanitarian community insist that increasing the timeframe back to its previous 12 month lifespan is critical in order to limit a further deterioration of situation for children and their families across the country following the deadly earthquakes early this year.

For further enquiries please contact:

Emily Wight, Emily.Wight@savethechildren.org;

Our media out of hours (BST) contact is media@savethechildren.org.uk+44(0)7831 650409

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