UNITED NATIONS - Europe's aid chief on Wednesday urged the UN Security Council to adopt a resolution to boost humanitarian access in Syria, an issue that has simmered for months in the shadow of plans for peace talks and a deal on destroying Syrian chemical weapons.
While 2 million Syrians have fled the civil war, there are more than 4 million people displaced inside the country and in urgent need of help, but violence and bureaucratic red-tape has slowed aid to a trickle, the United Nations has said.
The 15-member Security Council - long paralyzed on how to deal with the Syrian conflict - has for months been mulling action on aid access. Western members recently decided to pursue a non-binding statement on the issue rather than a resolution to avoid a likely showdown with Russia and China, diplomats said.
"We are not giving up on the Security Council at some point coming up with a binding resolution on humanitarian access. When this will take place we shall see," said EU Humanitarian Aid Commissioner Kristalina Georgieva.
"If there is another form of expressing of support (for aid access) we welcome it but we do hope there will be a Security Council resolution," she told a news conference on the sidelines of the annual gathering of world leaders at the United Nations.