Closure of Syria-Iraq crossing deprives residents of aid: AANES official

QAMISHLI, Syria (North Press) – On Monday, an official in the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES) said that the closure of Tel Kocher (Yaroubiyah) crossing deprives the residents of northeast Syria of aid amounting to $26.8 million due to the suspension of support to many organizations working in the region.

“About 40 NGOs and dozens of local associations are working in the AANES’s regions,” said Khalid Ibrahim, Head of the Organizations Affairs Office in the Jazira region.

Tel Kocher crossing, which sits on the Syria-Iraq border and is the only crossing through which UN aid may enter the AANES’s regions in Syria’s northeast, has been closed for over two years after Russia and China used their veto in the UN Security Council to close the crossing to the passage of UN aid.

“The closure of the crossing caused a budget deficit of $7 million for organizations as a result of their lack of support from abroad,” Ibrahim added.

On Sunday, the AANES appealed to the international community and the United Nations to open Tel Kocher crossing and to separate the humanitarian situation from the political interests of some countries.

The AANES demanded, through a statement, that the international community “contribute to saving our besieged people by supporting efforts to open this crossing, which will correct the course of international responsibilities towards our people.”

“Tel Kocher crossing constitutes essential lifeblood in northern and eastern Syria, and the decision to close it with a Russian-Chinese veto came as support for the siege policies followed against the people in the region,” the statement added.

Reporting by Hosheng Hassan