Russia’s permanent representative to the UN Vassily Nebenzia affirmed that the current humanitarian situation in Syria “does not provide an appropriate context for discussions on extending the cross-border aid mechanism.”
Nebenzia considered that the situation regarding cross-border aid transfer has not become transparent despite 3 rounds of informal consultations, claiming that “the arguments in favor of extending the cross-border aid transfer mechanism are unconvincing because the lack of an alternative to it is fabricated.”
Kirill Semenov, an expert at the Russian International Affairs Council, said that all sides in the Syrian settlement are interested in cross-border humanitarian aid delivery mechanism into northwestern Syria.
He added that closing this mechanism puts everyone in an awkward position, because the displaced people in Idleb will be deprived of aid, and this matter does not suit Western countries.
Semenov believed that Moscow would refuse to extend the mandate, which expires after two weeks, because the West is forgetting the Emergency Reconstruction Program, and he believed that it remains unclear to what extent the European Union’s leniency towards these programs will force Moscow to change its position.
Russia continues its efforts to put pressure on Western countries to obtain some political and economic gains in favor of the Assad regime, through its refusal to renew the aid delivery mechanism to Syria.