On 9 January 2023, the United Nations Security Council extended unanimously the mandate for cross-border humanitarian aid in Syria until 10 July. Together with Brazil, Switzerland introduced the respective resolution in the Security Council as co-penholder of the Syria humanitarian file.

The cross-border resolution allows UN agencies to provide humanitarian aid in north-western Syria, where more than 4 million people depend on it. Most live in camps or temporary shelters. Each month, around 800 lorries cross the Bab-al Hawa border from Turkey into Syria to deliver humanitarian goods. The cross-border humanitarian aid encompasses food, assistance regarding emergency shelters, education, the protection of the civilian population, and health, as well as equipment required to provide water and sanitation. 

With the Syria file, Switzerland has taken on a crucial Security Council dossier. Council members have long held divergent views on the issue of humanitarian aid on the ground. After the last attempt to extend the mandate in July 2022 failed due to a veto, a compromise was reached to extend the mechanism by six-months. The council once again extended unanimously the mandate for a six months period. The Council's cross-border resolution has enabled the delivery of humanitarian aid across the border into Syria since 2014. The Council has renewed it since it was first adopted.

UN Security Council renews cross-border humanitarian aid into Syria, press release, 09.01.2023

Interview on Switzerland's engagement in Syria

Declaration by Switzerland in the UN Security Council