The UN has demanded unhindered access to all besieged areas of the country, where it says hundreds of thousands of people are trapped by fighting and deliberate blockades by Syria’s various warring sides.
These were Madaya, Zabadani and Mouadamiya al-Sham near Damascus, which are under siege by government forces, and the villages of al-Foua and Kefraya in Idlib province, surrounded by rebel fighters.
The YPG has been the main force pushing back the jihadists across northern Syria, aided by an intense US-led air campaign.
Germany has revived calls for establishing a no-fly zone in northern Syria an idea that once might have helped the beleaguered rebels and protected civilians from bombardment but now is more complicated and unlikely. A total of 480,000 people in Syria are living under siege, he says.
The Turks and the Syrian Kurds, for example, are both fighting ISIS, both fighting the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad – and also fighting each other.
“Russia has showed its [true colors] by standing next to the murderer and tyrant [Bashar] al-Assad who has caused the death of nearly 500,000 people”.
Until now, Turkish authorities have prevented the majority of Syrians from passing into Turkey.
Turkey has called for foreign ground forces to deploy in Syria, part of a longstanding push by the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation member for a more robust response to the conflict in its neighbour.
As a result, Ban said, only 620,000 people in besieged Syrian areas received aid in 2015 from U.N.-coordinated humanitarian groups, compared to 2.9 million in 2014.
“In fact, the Syrian government is the one that needs to test the credibility of the United Nations envoy”, a statement said.
A German Foreign Ministry spokesman told reporters Wednesday that Merkel’s suggestion came in the context of what was agreed upon in Munich, that a humanitarian corridor should be established to deliver aid to Syrian civilians, and hostilities should cease, hopefully in the next day or two.
Ban said in a letter to the Security Council obtained Wednesday that rarely have the worldwide community and the council been presented with such a stark choice: Implement a resolution adopted in December endorsing a peace process for Syria or watch the warring parties pursue “the bankrupt logic of a military victory”.
After a delay, more than 100 trucks headed to the besieged areas.
“This will be a high-altitude operation where we will be dropping off lifesaving aid supplies with parachutes”, she said.
If the Syrian regime does not agree to the truce, the civil war could continue to drag on, said Vitaly Churkin, Russia’s ambassador to the United Nations.
Russian warplanes have been bombarding militant positions around Aleppo in support of a Syrian army offensive.
“The current situation remains unacceptable and it would be helpful if there was an area in Syria over which nobody could fly attacks”, she told the German parliament.
“We will not allow a new Qandil on our southern border” with Syria, Erdogan said in a televised speech in Ankara, referring to the mountain in northern Iraq which for years has been a stronghold of the Kurdistan Workers Party armed group.
The U.N. estimates that 18 Syrian communities are under siege, affecting about half a million people.