What does 2139 mean for Jordan?

تم نشره في Sun 23 February / Feb 2014. 06:45 PM - آخر تعديل في Sun 23 February / Feb 2014. 06:45 PM
  • Burnt out vehicles are seen at the site of a car bomb that targeted a checkpoint the day before, killing at least two soldiers and a civilian, on February 23, 2014 (AFP)

By Fahed Khitan

UN decision number 2139 taken by the UN Security Council on the humanitarian situation in Syria means a lot to Jordan. The Jordanian diplomats who sponsored the decision to reach a balanced format that satisfies all members of the council are betting on it becoming a pivotal point for the issues of the refugees and the humanitarian crisis in Syria.

The UN decision is based on several principles Jordan has already adopted, which now have turned into three priorities ratified by the international humanitarian organizations in Amman, late 2012: Strengthening Syrian’s existence within their lands through delivering international into Syria through the UN, provide support to the host communities and countries, and assist them in costs associated with hosting the refugees.

The decision is humanitarian par excellence. It is the first of its kind to be ratified by the UN Security Council with no objection or use of veto.

Early on, Jordan called for new solutions to face the humanitarian crisis in Syria that would decrease the number of refugees crossing into Jordan.

In this context, there was a suggestion to establish a protected humanitarian area near the Jordanian-Syrian borders. However, doubts about the suggestions and the official Syrian stance that rejected it, aborted the plan.

The UN decision mandates that the Syrian government and other parties to the conflict facilitate humanitarian aid access to all Syrian areas, whether under the control of the regime, the opposition, or a disputed area, even through war lines and legitimate border points.

Russia accepted the decision after it was amended, as per its request, and not included under the seventh chapter of the UN’s charter. Regardless, Russia’s position is extremely important; it must pressure its Syrian ally to implement it, which is what the UN Security Council members are betting on.

After months of the Syrian conflict’s onset, and waves of refugees come, Jordan began following up on the refuge process. Data showed that the Syrian refugees are pass through three areas in Syria, before moving to the last area outside of it; vis-à-vis, Jordan. That basically means that the Syrian citizen does not want to leave his/her country, and try their best to stay in, but the lack of security, food, and medicine gives them no chance to survive.

The experience of the Syrian refugees also showed that giving assistance to refugees inside Syria is far less than outside of it; not according to the UN and international community calculations, but to the host countries who are paying a lot of their resources, which is why the security council’s decision to provide assistance to Syrians inside Syria is important.

Jordan will be the main gateway for humanitarian support to the Syrians. Soon enough, the UN will establish a distribution center near the Jordanian borders in Syria for the aid convoys. The UN has already got an approval from the Syrian authorities for the establishment of the center.

Jordan hopes, after the UN’s decision, that the number refugees would drop after those who need assistance inside Syria get it. However, success depends on the cooperation of the authorities in Syria, firstly, and secondly on the opposition fractions.

The UN’s decision includes several important paragraphs about foreign fighters, calling them to leave Syria immediately, in addition to a ceasefire.

It is more than likely that the parties in this conflict will not heed to this decision, but there’s a chance to decrease the suffering of the Syrians and the burdens of the neighboring countries.

If it is the fate of thousands of Syrians to die by a bomb or suicidal bombings, it might be the fate of thousand others to be saved from starvation or illness.

@fahed_khitan

 

This article is an edited translation from the Arabic edition.

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