Syria: Assad ready to consider opening new border crossings for aid to Syria

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Damascus has announced that it has accepted international aid meant for rebel-held areas to be transported through areas under its control

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has indicated he is willing to consider opening new border crossings to advance aid to earthquake victims in northwestern Syria controlled by anti-regime forces, the head of the World Health Organization said today.

“This afternoon, I met His Excellency President Assad, who said he is open to the idea of ​​considering cross-border access points for this emergency,” said WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

Bar al-Hawa, the only functioning crossing point from Turkey to the earthquake-damaged areas controlled by anti-regime forces, was damaged during the earthquake. However, aid has been moving from there as early as Thursday, but there are growing calls for other border crossings to be opened to speed up the delivery of aid.

Tedros also welcomed “the approval recently given by the Syrian government for UN cross-border convoys” so they can deliver aid to rebel-held areas.

Damascus has announced that it has agreed to allow international aid meant for rebel-held areas to be routed through areas under its control.

However, the WHO is still waiting for the green light from the authorities in the north-west of these regions to move there.

“We are ready,” said the head of the WHO. “We can move at any time to the northwest, thanks to the authorization we have (…) from this side. Now we await news from the other side. When we have it, we will head northwest.”

RES-EMP

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