After the failed attempt to extend the cross-border humanitarian supplies for the Syrian population, Germany and Belgium still want to save the aid program with a new draft resolution. "We are ready to work around the clock," said the German ambassador to the UN, Christoph Heusgen. He called on the council members to think of the millions of Syrians who are "waiting for the Security Council to decide their fate."
The German-Belgian paper should possibly be put to the vote at the weekend. Russia and China had previously vetoed an extension of aid in the UN Security Council. Subsequently, a Russian counter-proposal was rejected by a large majority. It was the fifth vote on the subject since Tuesday. The current mandate for the cross-border aid program expired on Saturday night.
Germany and Belgium had already accommodated Russia in their failed draft resolution. It was changed in one central point compared to its first submission, so the aid should only be extended by half a year and not - as provided in the previous German-Belgian draft - for a whole year.
The background to the dispute in the Security Council is the fundamental view of both Russia and China that the UN cross-border aid program violates Syria's sovereignty because the government in Damascus has not formally approved it. Nevertheless, both veto powers had enabled the previous series of resolutions that formed the basis of the aid program.